PRACTICES

Intellectual Property Litigation

March 23, 2018

Intellectual property is a very familiar topic in developed countries, but in Vietnam it has not been regarded as a serious thing in practice.  Part of this phenomenon is a lack of legal enforcement in the Vietnamese legal system.  People, enterprises, agents, producers, traders, etc., are not well aware of their rights and obligations if they possess some kind of technology, knowledge, invention or simply a name, which leads to easy exploitation from other parties seeking to benefit by taking misappropriate actions.  Intellectual property is a kind of intangible asset, therefore it is usually difficult for the enterprise to recognize the value of what they have in hand.  There are reportedly companies that, after successfully establishing their brand in the local market, face challenges advertising their products nationally or internationally because somebody else has done the job of registering the IP protection.  In other cases, companies fight over the rights of owning a trademark, trade dress, brand name, which leads to costly litigation and damages to their reputation.

Le & Tran is highly aware of these loopholes.  Intellectual property is actually one of our most interested and focused practices since in Vietnam misappropriate use of IP is so widely common.  Taking a typical example, a newly composed song by a musician will be quickly spred among the music-lover community even before he earns a single dime for his work.  Another example is that, employees after leaving their old workplace, bring along them trade secrets and confidentially precious information which can potentially cause damage to the employer.

We assist our client from the very beginning of their business development and throughout the life of their advertised product or service.  Our lawyers are experts in technology and have extensive knowledge in engineering and various fields of science.  We can quickly learn even the most complex technical matters in automotive, computer science, information technology, designing, digital telecommunication, music, artwork, publishing, electronic games, software program, etc.  Our firm is supported by a broad network of specialists extended to a very large number of companies, who will give us valuable advices and insightful information for each specific industry, from which we can derive helpful intelligence to apply to our litigation and other legal works.

We have successfully protected our international clients from being exploited with their work and brand name, effectively preventing local manufacturers and enterprises from using such international brand for their own benefits.  We always mention IP protection registration when we provide legal service to our international and local clients.  If litigation arises, we will do our best to work out all possible solutions for our client’s best interest, avoiding future conflicts and ensuring a fair play for market participants.

Trade secret is another specific aspect of intellectual property.  In Vietnam, it relates a lot to both civil and labor matters, with the latter being the most adversely challenging obstacle for business owners.  Employees in Vietnam are too protected by the law and a single mistake by the employer can easily trigger a long-lasting fight over any disputes.  Furthermore, trade secret is often obtained by employees during their employment at a company.  Securing such intellectual asset is already an extremely difficult goal for our client, we therefore don’t only protect our client from legal aspects, but we also employ non-legal tactics in negotiation and skillfully arrange for best settlements of every case, whether during consultancy stage or litigation at court.