2017/5/23 - 23 Cdo 2765/2012 (summary)

Judgement of the Supreme Court dated 23 May 2017, file number 23 Cdo 2765/2012

(right to information)

The applicant requested the imposition of the obligation upon the defendant to provide information on the origin and distribution networks of school bags, children's bags, briefcases and bags Megababe, as they infringed the applicant's industrial property rights. The Court of first instance dismissed the action on the grounds that obligation to provide information can be imposed pursuant to Act No. 221/2006 only in proceedings of infringement of industrial property rights. However, these proceeding have already been terminated in favour of the applicant after the court did not allow the extension of the complaint for providing this information. However, the appellate court changed this judgment by imposing on the defendant the obligation to provide that information. He referred to Directive 2004/48 / EC of the European Parliament and of the Council, under which Member States should ensure that judicial authorities are able to order the provision of information on the origin and distribution networks infringing an intellectual property rights. Act No. 221/2006 must therefore be interpreted in accordance with the purpose of this directive. The defendant filed an appeal against the judgment of the appellate court. He further argued that the appellate court did not deal with the assertion that the purpose of the dispute and the objective which the applicant sought to achieve in the present proceedings had already been fulfilled by the provision of information in relation to the previous proceedings.

The Supreme Court ruled that the provisions of the Act No. 221/2006 must be interpreted in accordance with European Union law. The provision in question must be interpreted in such a way that the information can be claimed in connection with infringement proceedings. As the phrase "in connection with infringement proceedings" was unambiguous, the Supreme Court referred the question to the Court of Justice of the EU ("the Court of Justice") and asked whether it is applicable to the situation of an independent proceeding initiated after the final decision in the infringement proceedings. The Court of Justice in its decision C-427/15 stated that “in connection with infringement proceedings” covers this situation, since it is necessary to take into account the objectives and the context of the legislation in question. The legal assessment of this question by the appellate court was therefore correct. However, the Supreme Court found the objection to the failure to comply with the objection to the provision of such information by the defendant in the previous proceedings as reasonable and therefore annulled the decision of the appellate court.