Thursday 29 November 2012

Norwich Pharmacal orders and the Scottish courts

Our last post included the scarcely contentious claim that litigation is risky, costly and time-consuming. Bad enough, then, if you have to litigate to protect or advance your own interests but what if you get embroiled in someone else’s dispute? A retailer can innocently offer for sale goods, manufactured by another, which are said to infringe someone else’s intellectual property rights. An internet service provider can host a site on which someone anonymously defames, or makes maliciously false statements about, another.  The business stuck in the middle can then find demands being made on it by both sides. Typically, one side will want information to assist in proposed court action whilst the other may have a legitimate right to have that information (for example, their name and personal details) kept private. It’s important for businesses to understand what obligations fall on someone who gets mixed up in this way. After all, it could happen to you. It can save an awful lot of management time, at least, if you already have some idea of what you should and shouldn’t do and what can, and can’t, be demanded of you.