by Jeremy Erwin , Ross Magee November-15-2021 in Commercial & Business, Dispute Resolution & Litigation, Intellectual Property, Technology

The High Court procedural rules have been amended to create a new division of the Commercial Court dedicated to intellectual property cases and disputes involving complex technology issues. The Intellectual Property and Technology List came into operation on 22 October 2021. The list will have a dedicated judge assigned by the President of the High Court and will deal with disputes in relation to both registered intellectual property rights (e.g. patents, trade marks, registered designs, etc.) and unregistered intellectual property rights (e.g. copyright, passing off, trade secrets, etc.). The Court also has the authority to admit matters to the Intellectual Property and Technology List which it views as having issues of technological complexity warranting a hearing in the list.

Like other cases in the Commercial List, proceedings in the Intellectual Property and Technology List will be case managed in order to ensure a speedy resolution and to minimise costs. Each matter within the new list will have a case management conference after the pleadings have closed to ensure “that the proceedings are prepared for trial in a manner which is just, expeditious and likely to minimise the costs of the proceedings”. The case management conference allows the judge to deal with numerous pre-trial issues including:

  1. The need for expert or factual evidence
  2. The requirement for discovery or limited discovery
  3. The requirement of an expert assessor
  4. If evidence is heard on affidavit only



The introduction of the new dedicated list follows recommendations made in the Review of the Administration of Civil Justice Report published in October 2020 and chaired by former President of the High Court, Mr Justice Peter Kelly. The creation of the dedicated list and associated streamlined process coupled with Ireland being the only purely common law jurisdiction in Europe, further promotes the jurisdiction as an attractive destination to pursue and defend intellectual property and technology disputes. The advantages of having a dedicated court that deals with complex intellectual property and technology disputes on a regular basis will ensure greater efficiency in managing these disputes so they are resolved in a timely and cost-effective manner.

If you would like further information on any of the issues raised in this article, please contact Jeremy Erwin or Ross Magee at Hayes solicitors LLP.

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