France

Please contact our partner office for more information about our services in France:

Contratak S.A.S.
66 rue de la Chaussée d’Antin
75 009 Paris
France
T +33 (0)1 48 74 58 69
Contact: Mr Phillipe van Eeckhout and Mrs Elisabeth Pricaz
france@react.org
information@contratak.com


Contratak is a French based consultancy firm fully dedicated to anti-counterfeiting fight around the world. Our aim is to develop and implement the optimum strategy to resolve counterfeit issues for our client in a cost effective way. Having the same vision and value, this is why Contratak is a REACT partner for France. Since the last 15 years, we have created strong relationship with all French authorities (Police, Gendarmerie, and Customs) in order to deliver a fast and adequate response to our client’s expectations thanks to the reliability and reactivity of our network of local contacts. France has always been very active in anti-counterfeiting fight more particularly customs authorities. The first customs legislation dates back to 1994, prior to the implementation of the first EU regulation. This means that in France and contrary to other EU countries we have specific rules combining national and EU regulations.

Our services in France

  • Attending personal hearing
  • Desk research
  • Drafting and filing of administrative complaints
  • Drafting and filing of criminal complaints
  • Drafting and filing of expert reports, affidavits and written witness statements
  • Filing a demand for a raid
  • Filing Customs applications
  • Informing Customs officers on brand details
  • Organize and assist the police and relevant authorities in market raids
  • Organize inspections and investigations of markets, shops and events
  • Organize test purchases
  • Organizing training sessions and information meetings for Police, Customs and/or Trade Inspection authorities
  • Simplified procedure

Country Procedures

  • Customs application available and it is valid for 1 year, renewal every year
  • Simplified procedure
  • Customs will act ex officio for up to four working days, during which period rights holder may file an application with Customs
  • Deadline for response to Customs notification of detention is 10 working days, extendable for 10 additional working days under special request duly motivated
  • Importer has 10 working days from notification of the detention to oppose destruction of detained goods
  • Where the declarant or the holder of the goods has not confirmed his agreement to the destruction of the goods nor notified his opposition thereto to the customs authorities, within those deadlines, the customs authorities may deem the declarant or the holder of the goods to have confirmed his agreement to the destruction of those goods
  • Special proceedings concerning Goods in Transit: both party have ten days to answer. The right owner may still ask for the application of the simplified destruction proceeding. HOWEVER and contrary to what is implemented today for direct importation, the lack of answer from the declarant/holder of the goods will not be understood as acceptance of the simplified destruction proceeding.  Therefore only express consent will be taken into account. Furthermore, Customs have clearly indicate that in lack of simplified destruction proceeding (absence of express consent form declarant/holder of the goods) the only way to avoid the release of the goods will be to file legal proceedings (criminal or civil case) either from the start or during the extension of 10 more days
  • French Customs officers are submitted to the professional secrecy and no details concerning the seizure can be disclosed, except quantity and nature of the products. The disclosure of the information can be asked within the 10 days delay, as long as they are used for the purpose allowed by current regulation (EURegulation 608/2013, article 21) namely:
    (a) to initiate proceedings to determine whether an intellectual property right has been infringed and in the course of such proceedings
    (b) in connection with criminal investigations related to the infringement of an intellectual property right and undertaken by public authorities in the Member State where the goods are found
    (c) to initiate criminal proceedings and in the course of such proceedings
    (d) to seek compensation from the infringer or other persons
    (e) to agree with the declarant or the holder of the goods that the goods be destroyed in accordance with Article 23(1)
    (f) to agree with the declarant or the holder of the goods of the amount of the guarantee referred to in point (a) of Article 24(2)
  • Local authorities tasked with taking criminal action against infringers are the Public prosecutors and Customs
  • Remedies available under criminal law: imprisonment (up to five years), fine (up to €500,000), closure of premises, destruction of goods and damages
  • Proof of knowledge of counterfeiting in principle required. However, it can also be presumed from the circumstances of the infringement
  • Ex parte orders available: seizure of samples of infringing goods and related invoices, provisional prohibition under penalty and freezing of assets
  • Interim injunctions available: in urgent cases within a few days. Otherwise four to eight weeks
  • Damages and costs available: commercial loss, moral harm to the rights holder and profit made by infringer
  • Contributory liability remedy available: importer, distributor and ISP's