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Newsletter 2012 May

  • Lithuania

    01-06-2012

    Bankruptcy Law

    Amendments to the Civil Code adopted

    On 10 May 2012, the Parliament of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter “the Parliament”) adopted amendments to the articles of the Civil Code of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter “the Civil Code”) which regulate the notarial form of a transaction and the form of a contract. The amendments provide that transactions on the sale (transfer) of real estate, made during the bankruptcy proceedings, do not require the notarial form. Also, the amendments stipulate that a real estate sale and purchase contract must be in the notarial form, except for the real estate sale and purchase contracts concluded during the bankruptcy proceedings. The amendments will come into force on 1 March 2013.

    Labour Law

    Amendments to the Labour Code adopted

    On 5 June 2012, the Parliament adopted amendments to the Labour Code of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter “the Labour Code”) in order to, inter alia, reduce administrative burden on business.

    According to the currently valid provisions of the Labour Code, every employer must not only assess potential risks to the safety and health of employees, but also fill in an occupational safety and health status card in the enterprise. Moreover, in the internal working regulations, the employer must establish the general duties of employees in ensuring the occupational health and safety.

    The amended Labour Code dropped both the requirement for filling in an occupational safety and health status card in the enterprise and the requirement to determine the general duties of employees in respect of occupational health and safety. This, however, will not lower the level of occupational health and safety, as the employer will continue gathering and analysing information on the status of occupational health and safety and compliance of workstations with occupational health and safety legislation pursuant to the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Health and Safety at Work and will specify the employees’ specific duties in ensuring the occupational health and safety in occupational health and safety instructions, job descriptions and regulations.

    These amendments will come into force on 1 July 2012.

    Moreover, in order to create more favourable conditions for initial adaptation of an adopted child (regardless of his age) in the family of his adoptive parents and in order to create favourable conditions for families to adopt children of more senior age, on 5 June 2012, the Parliament supplemented Article 180 of the Labour Code with a new part 2. The adopted amendment to the Labour Code provides that upon the coming into force of a court’s judgment on adoption, at the choice of the family, the adoptive mother or the adoptive father shall be granted a 3-month child care leave (except for the cases where a child of the spouse is adopted or where the adoptive mother/father has already been granted child care leave under Part 1 of Article 180 of the Labour Code). If, at the same time, an employee has the right to take leave for the care of the same child both under Parts 1 and 2 of Article 180 of the Labour Code, such employee shall be granted respective leave of his choice. Employees, entitled to such leave, may take it in turns.

    The amendment will come into force on 1 September 2012.

    Real Estate Law

    Amendments to the Law on Construction adopted

    On 22 May 2012, the Parliament adopted amendments to the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Construction (hereinafter the CL). The amendments provide that the functions of the Product Contact Point for Construction in the Republic of Lithuania shall be performed by a Government-authorised public legal entity. The amendments also stipulate the main provisions on the cooperation between the Product Contact Point for Construction and governmental institutions. Moreover, the amendments increase the scope of the liability of legal entities by setting forth that a fine between 5,000 and 25,000 LTL (in the event of a repeated breach – between 10,000 and 30,000 LTL) is imposed on legal entities not only for misuse of a construction works, but also for the use of a construction works in violation of the requirements established in the LC and in other laws. The amendments regarding the liability of legal entities for violations of the use of a construction works will be effective as of 9 January 2013, whereas the amendments regarding the Product Contact Point for Construction will come into force on 1 July 2013.

    Pharmacy Law

    Amendments to the Law on Pharmacy adopted

    The currently valid wording of the Law of the Republic of Lithuania on Pharmacy (hereinafter “the PL”) provides that the pharmacy technicians who have been issued a licence for pharmaceutical activity prior to the entry into force of the PL or persons who started their pharmacy technician studies prior to the entry into force of the PL, who will acquire the professional qualification of the pharmacist’s assistant (pharmacy technician) after the entry into force of the PL, may provide the pharmacy service according to the procedure established by the PL and the Minister of Health, but for not longer than until 31 December 2015.

    In order to align the provisions of the PL with Directive 2005/36/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 September 2005 on the recognition of professional qualifications and to remove the contradiction of Part 5 of Article 76 of the PL to the provisions of Directive 2005/36/EC, on 15 May 2012, the Parliament adopted amendments to the PL. The amendments lay down that all bar none assistants to pharmacist (pharmacy technicians) may provide pharmacy service, sell/dispense medicinal products and engage in extemporaneous preparation of medicinal products only under the supervision of a pharmacist. This amendment to the PL will come into force on 6 September 2012.

    Moreover, Article 35 of the PL was supplemented with a provision that during working hours of a pharmacy store at least one pharmacist must be present. This amendment to the PL will be effective as of 1 January 2016.

    Civil Procedure Law

    Amendment to the Civil Procedure Code adopted

    On 15 May 2012, the Parliament adopted an amendment to Article 83 of the Civil Procedure Code of the Republic of Lithuania regarding persons exempt from the stamp duty and payment of other litigation expenses. The amendment will enable natural persons, against whom bankruptcy proceedings are initiated, to be exempt from the stamp duty and payment of other litigation expenses. The amendment will become effective as of 1 March 2013.

    Intellectual Property Law

    Regulation on entrusting the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) with tasks related to the enforcement of intellectual property rights, including the assembling of public and private-sector representatives as a European Observatory on Infringements of Intellectual Property Rights

    The European Observatory on Counterfeiting and Piracy was created as part of the Commission’s Internal Market and Services Directorate General in April 2009.

    On 19 April 2012, Regulation (EU) No 386/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council (hereinafter “the Regulation”) was adopted, which fully entrusted the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) (hereinafter “OHIM”) with the Observatory, now renamed the Observatory on Infringements of Intellectual Property Rights.

    Pursuant to the Regulation, the Observatory should become a centre of excellence on information and data relating to infringements of intellectual property rights, by benefiting from OHIM’s expertise, experience and resources.

    The Regulation was published in the EU Official Journal on 16 May 2012 and came into effect 20 days later on 5 June 2012.

    Other News

    Eversheds Saladžius IP expert Tomas Jakubauskas to deliver a presentation at the Business Breakfast of the French Chamber of Commerce in Lithuania

    Tomas Jakubauskas is to deliver presentation Topicalities in Trademark Matters on 27 June 9.00 a.m. at Novotel Vilnius Centre. The presentation will focus on the last developments in the trademark legislation, court practice and practice of trademark owners and users. The speaker will cover current mostly common and increasing infringements of the exclusive rights of the trademark owners and will advice upon the possible prevention of the infringements. We will also elaborate on the most common mistakes of the trademark owners and users made in the course of business and will introduce with possible means to fight them. The newest developments in the trademark legislation and court practice as well as their impact on rights and duties of the trademark owners and users will also be discussed.
    Should you wish to register for the event, please contact us via phone +370 5 2392 391 or email law.firm@eversheds.lt

    Eversheds Saladžius celebrated Give & Gain Day 2012

    Eversheds Saladžius celebrated Give & Gain Day 2012, dedicated to getting thousands of employees internationally, out of the workplace to volunteer in their local community. This year we delivered Education through Sports project. We have brought a group of children (aged 12-13) to one of the stadiums here in Vilnius, where sportsmen train for the Olympic Games. The project was guided by a Lithuanian TV star - Vlada Musvydaite. Vlada is a TV face, presenting sports at TV news programme on a daily basis, she also features at her own programme on the television and is an athlete, candidate for London Olympic Games. Vlada introduced participants of the project with Lithuanian sportsmen training for the Olympics: Carate World Cup champion Margarita Ciuplyte led an introductory carate lesson for children and athlete, candidate for the Olympics Vitalijus Kozlovas led a jogging lesson. The second part of the project was dedicated to promoting sports and healthy eating: some sporting activities with a particular focus on proper training and a lecture by a professional dietician on healthy eating principles.

    Eversheds Saladžius joins ECTA

    Eversheds Saladžius has become a member of ECTA, the European Communities Trade Mark Association. ECTA numbers approximately 1.400 members, coming from all the Member States of the European Union with associate members from all over the world. It brings together all those persons practising professionally in the Member States of the European Community in the field of trade marks, designs and related IP matters. These professionals are lawyers, trade mark advisors, trade mark attorneys, in-house counsel and others who can be considered specialist practitioners in these areas.

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