Posts Tagged ‘Case News’

January 25, 2013

Monsato’s deal with Farmers

Food manufacturers that are attempting to build new factories and sites for their expansion in Brazil will have to work with the farmers in the area and cultivate a strong relationship to ensure their prosperity. The laws in Brazil surrounding tariffs and taxes on all transactions and trade taking place on an international level will affect the way a number of companies operate. However, with the help of a Brazilian lawyer, these regulations can be followed while benefiting both parties.

The world’s largest seed company, Monsanto Corporation, will be waiving two years of its royalty fees for its Roundup Ready soybean seeds collection if Brazilian farmers stop the process of a patent dispute lawsuit, according to Bloomberg. Farmers would not have to pay the technology fee but would waive the right to gain back royalties that were previously paid. This new agreement would resolve the disputed allegation that the Roundup Ready soybeans patent expired in 2010.

“This agreement reflects the support of key grower associations and provides a mechanism to allow all parties to focus on the long-term solutions that will support the Brazilian agriculture industry and its growing demands,” Rodrigo Santos, president of Monsanto Brazil, said in a statement.

The company, however, will be excluding Brazil soybean sales from its profit forecast. Nonetheless, this agreement is beneficial to both parties and the Agriculture and Livestock Confederation of Brazil has supported the negotiations. Nasdaq reported that Monsanto shares have been rising and have reached $102.98 per share. However, farmers who choose not to participate and follow through with the patent dispute claims will have to pay technology royalty fees.

Foreign businesses attempting to develop negotiations with the farmers of Brazil – much like Monsanto – would be wise to do so through legal means. Contacting a Brazilian law firm may benefit companies looking to create contracts with Brazilian businesses.

January 2, 2013

Copyright Infringement suit against Apple

Businesses that are opening up a factory or other site in Brazil will need to follow all laws and regulations regarding mergers, acquisitions and intellectual property that is standard within Brazil law.

For instance, copyright infringement is a major issue in the business world and foreign companies are advised to heed all copyright laws inherent in a different country such as Brazil. Also, when developing a product or service such as a movie or book, it is vital to speak with a lawyer in Brazil who can provide copyright protections for one’s work.

For example, a proper outlined document covering one’s intellectual property includes burdens of proof or a description of how a copyright may be broken. Also, a plan of action discussing a fine or imprisonment for copyright infringement needs to be included.

The Wall Street Journal reported that a Brazilian electronics company has developed a new smartphone that uses the same name as Apple’s iPhone brand.  IGB Eletrônica SA released a new phone called the “IPHONE Neo One” and used the particular name due to its filing for a trademark in 2000, which was before Apple released its device.

Since the company has actually had claim to the name before Apple, it is possible that the electronics maker will fight for its intellectual property rights.

“For telephones, the brand doesn’t belong to Apple. It belongs to Gradiente,” Silvia Rodrigues, interim director of the brands department at Brazil’s National Institute of Industrial Property, told the news source. “Gradiente has the right to defend its brand.”

Businesses attempting to protect their intellectual property in Brazil, much like IGB Eletrônica SA, would be wise to consult a Brazilian attorney specializing in copyright infringement cases.

December 17, 2012

Chevron’s $144 Million Settlement

The laws in Brazil can play a big impact on the growth and expansion of a foreign company attempting to invest in resources in this country. For instance, any business attempting to create mergers or acquisitions would need the assistance of a Brazilian law firm experienced in business-related legal matters.

A variety of disputes could lead to a lawsuit for any company and business owners will need to ensure that dealings with employees, contract workers, consumers and other staff comply with all laws in Brazil. The energy industry, for example, has had a large amount of legal difficulties, especially when it comes to a potential oil spill that damages wildlife.

Environmental laws in Brazil can be complex and, as such, working with a Brazilian law firm may prove necessary. The San Francisco Business Times reported that Chevron Corporation is currently offering to pay $144 million to settle lawsuits surrounding an oil spill that occurred in Brazil last year.

However, prosecutors in the case have been seeking $20 billion in damages, which means this settlement may not be agreed upon by the plaintiffs. Both parties are working with an arbitration lawyer to come to a resolution regarding the appropriate settlement.

“We could have an agreement before Christmas,” Gisele Porto, prosecutor for the case, told Reuters. “The amount is reasonable, and I don’t think I could get a judge to sign off on more.”

Fox Business reported that the case would come to a close and the two parties will be able to settle if an environmental regulator can prove that no environmental damage was caused by the oil spill of 3,700 barrels of crude product dumped into the Atlantic Ocean.

December 14, 2012

Accusations with the Chief of Staff

This blog has previously reported that Brazilian officials were implicated in a scandal in which they allegedly provided contracted work to businesses that offered them bribes. The former chief-of-staff Rosemary Noronha was arrested due to this illegal activity, but she claims her innocence, according to The Rio Times.

Despite the accusations of peddling and corruption within her government role, Noronha alleges that she is innocent and never took part in any illegal affairs. The accusations claim that she aided Paulo Rodrigues Vieira when he abused his power while in government.

“While working for the president, I never did anything illegal, immoral or irregular that favored the former minister José Dirceu or former President Lula when he held that position,” Noronha said in a statement. “I also never knew of their personal or professional relationship with the brothers Paulo and Rubens Vieira.”

The federal government will be undergoing further probing into the careers of these individuals to see whether there is truth to the scandal.

Business owners working within Brazil will need to avoid such scandals at their company, as investigations may reveal unsavory truths and accusations that could lead to lawsuits or even arrests. As such, working with a Brazilian attorney at experienced business law firms in Brazil will help companies comply with all federal laws and avoid controversy.

Business owners who are developing contracts, negotiating transactions, mergers or acquisitions in other countries like Brazil would benefit from one-stop law services with offices located in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and New York.

A Brazilian law firm specializing in business disputes and defending the rights of international companies and foreign clients can offer resolution tactics, intellectual property guidance and contract negotiations.

December 11, 2012

Agreement on Brazilian Offshore Procedures

Within Brazil, arbitration and dispute resolution tactics have risen in recent years, as more businesses invest in the resources of this country and attempt to solve any problems arising from business dealings. The Brazilian arbitration law was passed in 1996, which led to an explosion of arbitration proceedings within the country over the past 15 years.

International commercial disputes are better resolved and settled before going to court, as lawsuits tend to cost companies millions of dollars. Foreign investment in Brazil has surged in recent years, which also contributes to the expansion of arbitration services in the nation.

Impartial local centers have also been instituted within the country to help businesses resolve their problems before going to court. Law firms in Brazil also include experienced and knowledgeable attorneys who offer arbitration and dispute resolution services to companies of any industry.

Chevron Corp and Transocean Ltd are two companies that may have benefited from undergoing arbitration proceedings instead of investing in lawyers for a $20 billion lawsuit due to an oil spill that took place in November 2011. Reuters reported that the two companies have made an agreement to change offshore operating and safety procedures in Brazil.

“The agreement, known as a “change-of-conduct accord,” was drafted at the companies’ request with federal prosecutors who are handling two civil lawsuits against Chevron and Transocean,” the news source stated. “The lawsuits are the largest-ever environmental prosecutions in Brazil.”

However, reports show that no one was hurt in the oil spill accident and no oil reached the shores. Also, no visible environmental impact was recorded, according to the source.

Businesses investing in the resources of Brazil who have encountered disputes with other companies would be wise to contact a Brazilian attorney with experience in arbitration and dispute resolution.