The European Union (“EU”) is the most significant trade partner of the United States. Trading in goods protected by intellectual property rights remains a challenge for American business entities as they are forced to sift through a myriad of law consisting of the federal intellectual property law of the EU and the intellectual property law of the member states. The European Court of Justice (“ECJ” or “the Court”) has been faced with dozens of complex cases arising out of conflicts between the national law of the member states and the Articles of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (“TFEU” or “the Treaty”) that mandate the free movement of goods across national lines as one of the TFEU's fundamental purposes. This work presents the pertinent issues that arise in conflicts between the two bodies of law, and provides a thorough explanation and analysis of the case law of the ECJ on the issue of intellectual property rights and the free movement of goods.
Intellectual Property, the Free Movement of Goods and Trade Restraint in the European Union,
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Available at: http://digitalcommons.pepperdine.edu/jbel/vol6/iss1/3