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Internet retailers advised to seek legal advice

10 July 2003 Media Statement

Internet retailers advised to seek legal advice

"Recent publicity over DE Technologies efforts to enforce its patent covering cross border e-commerce processes has caused considerable concern for internet retailers, particularly small operators," said Associate Commerce Minister Judith Tizard.

"It appears that the company's legal advisers have written to some retailers alleging patent infringement and seeking payment of licence fees and royalties for the use of patented technologies.

“I cannot comment on the validity of the patent, this is a matter for the courts to decide. However, I would advise retailers not to ignore such a letter.

"Any retailer who is concerned by these letters is encouraged to seek legal advice from a patent attorney who will be able to advise you on whether you are infringing the patent and assist you with any action that may need to be taken.

"Yes, for a small business the costs may seem daunting but the costs to your business of ignoring such a letter could be even greater,” Judith Tizard said.

Details of the patent (NZ Patent 505284) can be obtained from the website of the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand.


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