On December 3, 2008, an en banc decree from the Superior Chamber of the Federal Court for Fiscal andAdministrative Justice provides such court the jurisdiction to adjudicate appeals challenging rulings issued by theMexican Institute of Intellectual Property (IMPI), the agency responsible for ruling on matters concerningtrademarks, patents, and intellectual property rights, starting on January 5, 2009, pursuant to the FederalAdministrative Litigation Procedure Law. Such appeals shall be carried out in administrative proceedings, alsocalled actions for annulment. Previously, a non-prevailing party in any ruling issued by the IMPI was required tofile a lawsuit within 45 business days at one of the Regional Metropolitan Chambers of the Court when theGovernment Defendant is located in the Federal District, and such court determined the jurisdiction of theChambers. The decree described above addresses the problem arising from a saturation of the eleven RegionalChambers of the Metropolitan Court mentioned above. Such saturation delayed actions for annulment in any ofthe Regional Metropolitan Chambers for up to three years before a judgment was issued. Given the above, theSuperior Chamber of the Federal Court for Fiscal and Administrative Justice approved en banc the formation of anew Regional Chamber for Intellectual Property matters which is based in Mexico City, Federal District, for thepurpose of adjudicating only those matters concerning intellectual property and copyrights. Pursuant to suchdecree, any appeal of intellectual property matters will be required to be heard before this new Chamber. Thenew Chamber will be located at Insurgentes Sur Avenue #881, 8th Floor, Napoles District, Mexico, FederalDistrict, and the ongoing cases at the Regional Chambers that have not been adjudicated as of November 30,2008 will be transferred to this new Specialized Regional Chamber. Positive results are expected from thisreorganization since a specialized Chamber with exclusive jurisdiction in this subject matter may result in thetimely adjudication of appeals with the profound analysis that this subject matter requires.
In late October 2008, the Official Journal for the State of Coahuila published a decree enacting the MaternityProtection Law in the State of Coahuila, which protects the rights of pregnant women by safeguarding theirhealth, the health of their unborn children and the health of newborns. Under the new law, physicians providingmedical services, whether at public or private settings, will have the duty of informing their pregnant patients ofthe existence of the law, its purposes and the protection that such law offers to such women. The State ofCoahuila may provide financial aid to women, based on financial need, to those who request it in order to helpthem pay for medical visits, laboratory analysis, ultrasounds and any other type of general medical andpsychological care that such women may need to protect their health and the health of their unborn children. Thelaw also provides pregnant women rights to employment stability and access to public or private educationinstitutions, and will provide tax incentives to individuals or entities that hire pregnant women. Women withacquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) will, additionally, have access to specialized care in order toprotect their health and the health of their unborn children, ensuring that physicians providing care to them arecertified as specialists.
During the month of September of this year, Mexico’s Supreme Court published opinion number 72/2008 with aheading that reads “Economic Agents. In order to be considered as such, their activity must transcend theeconomic activity of the State,” which was issued by the First Chamber of said court on July 2nd of this year, andby which the superior court held that, as provided in the Federal Antitrust Law, the operations and practicescarried out by such agents must be examined in order to determine whether an economic agent transcends theeconomic activity of the State or if it interferes with competition and free markets with its exertion of substantial economic power on a relevant market. Mexico’s Supreme Court has thus held that in order to be considered aneconomic agent, such agent’s activities must transcend the economic activities of the State, that is, its commercialgains must have an impact on competition and free markets.