Japan Practice Department
【Importance of legal risk management at overseas subsidiaries】
Ensuring compliance is a rather challenging effort to protect the company. Currently, a large number of Japanese parent companies have a legal department with skilled employees. By contrast, subsidiaries in Taiwan rarely have such legal department; for example, many of them have no staff who are exclusively engaged in legal affairs, or no person in charge of legal issues with a legal background. However, legal documents often use technical terms that are not in dictionaries or are unfamiliar for ordinary Taiwanese people, and thus a high level of legal skill is required.
Also, we believe that you may have faced the difficulty of preventing fraud in overseas subsidiaries. We often receive inquiries regarding fraudulent acts which seem to have occurred inside the companies from the subsidiaries of Japanese companies in Taiwan. Compliance is a battle to protect the company: if there are no rules and mechanism for preventing fraudulent acts which executives and employees must obey, or they do not comply with them, then fraudulent acts may occur easily.
The same goes for contracts; disputes may easily arise if you do not carefully review the contract terms. If you execute the contracts without sufficient review, of course, you may face a huge loss later. There is no concept of "litigation is the last resort" in Taiwan, so once a dispute arises, the counter party may file a lawsuit and then the court may determine it according to the contract terms. In Taiwan, it is extremely risky if the contract does not clearly set forth the important terms, causing any important issues to be determined by consultation between the parties.
【Key of risk management is ensuring efficiency: Our support】
Insufficient risk management of legal affairs may result in considerable financial losses. However, there are a huge number of risks, and it is unrealistic to spend considerable resources for all the risks. Thus, the important thing for proper risk management is to identify the important risks and the non-important risks and allocate sufficient resources and time accordingly. In addition, when a dispute arises, it is also important how to handle it efficiently.
We emphasize suggesting efficient and realistic solutions considering the situation of each client, including:
① Providing services that satisfy the needs of each client in plain language
We believe that, when you retained an overseas law firm, some of you have felt that "they did not directly answer the question", "their advice was inconsistent", or "they just stated the conclusion but did not explain the reason".
It seems that there are many cases that communication is not successful due to cultural differences and language barriers. We focus on providing answers with clear and easy-to-understand wording after accurately understanding your intention (if unsure, make it clear immediately).
In particular, considering that many staff from various backgrounds are in charge of legal affairs at subsidiaries in Taiwan, we place importance on explaining our advice in the terms that a person who has no legal background may understand.
② Support for efficient solution
Ensuring compliance at overseas subsidiaries is more challenging and difficult than in Japan due to language and cultural barriers; however, we believe that, at present, limited resources are allocated to the legal affairs of overseas subsidiaries in many companies. Currently, we do not expect that the situation will significantly improve in the near future due to the influence of Covid-19.
We focus on providing advice suitable for the current situation of each client in order to solve various issues efficiently.
③ Services suitable for business practices of Japanese companies
We believe that when you retained an overseas law firm, some of you may have faced difficulties due to the difference in business practices (such as process of internal decision) between Japan and Taiwan. We emphasize providing services that are suitable for business practices of Japanese companies.
Of course, it may be difficult to expect that counterparties (Taiwanese companies) will comply with the common sense in Japan. We may provide advice on negotiation strategies based on business practices in Taiwan.
Japan practice department provides services, including, but not limited to:
・ M&A, investments in Taiwan
・ Finance (loans, financial products)
・ Fraudulent acts inside companies
・ Various government permits and approvals, import-related regulations and land-related regulations
・ Drafting employment rules and other internal rules; labor disputes and other labor law-related services
・ The Personal Data Protection Act, the Consumer Protection Act, and product liability laws
・ Merger filings, cartels and other antitrust law-related services
・ Review of agreements pertaining to energy-related businesses and public procurements, and disputes relating to those agreements
・ Disputes related to intellectual property rights (negotiations, drafting warning letters)
・ Other civil, criminal, and administrative litigations and arbitrations, mediations
・ Corporate reorganization, bankruptcy
・ Closure of offices in Taiwan
・ Drafting and reviewing various agreements
・ Translation of various legal documents
・ Applications to the Intellectual Property Office of Taiwan for invention patents, utility model patents, design patents
・ Applications to the China National Intellectual Property Administration (Mainland China) for invention patents, utility model patents, design patents.
・ Applications to other foreign intellectual property offices (including EPO) for invention patents, utility model patents, design patents, and hub applications together with applications in Taiwan and Mainland China.
・ Prior art searches, collecting materials to be used at invalidation actions, number searches, research relating to infringement, landscape searches, patents mapping.
・ Monitoring patent applications by other companies
・ Obtaining patent publications
・ Validity assessments
・ Infringement assessments
・ Discovery of inventions and preparation of patent specifications
・ Translating descriptions and technical documents, or reviewing translations
・ Advice on prior user rights and supporting notarization to prove such
・ Invalidation proceedings
・ Providing information regarding application for invention patents, utility model patents, design patents
・ Appealing against decisions of rejection or invalidation
・ Administrative litigations and civil litigations related to registration of invention patents, utility model patents, design patents
・ Intellectual property valuation
・ Annuity managements
・ Intellectual property education for staff of subsidiaries in Taiwan
・Trademark research, applications for registration;
・Suggesting trademark protection strategies;
・Applications for opposition, trial for invalidation and trial for cancellation, or assisting responses to these applications;
・Transferring or licensing trademarks, or registering pledges on the trademarks;
・Management of trademarks and copyrights;
・Drafting and reviewing contracts relating to trademark and copyright
・Disputes on trademarks and copyrights, such as, suggesting strategies regarding infringement litigations, consulting, investigations, evidence-collection and handling litigations
【Main attorneys and patent attorneys (Japanese available)】
Patent general manager Tony C. H. Lin patent attorney
Patent first division manager Tzu-Lien Ou patent attorney
Patent section division manager Kayu Kuo patent attorney
Partner Arthur Li attorney
Partner Patrick Marros Chu attorney
Associate Partner Li-Tzu Lin attorney