Arnason Faktor – Business Terms
Arnason Faktor provides a variety of intellectual property related consultancy services, including drafting and prosecution of patents, trademarks, designs, and the registration of domain names. These terms of business apply to all work and services carried out by Arnason Faktor on behalf of its clients, unless otherwise agreed in our engagement letter, or other cooperation agreement. New or continued instructions from a client, following the receipt of or reference to these terms, will constitute as acceptance of the same.
Confidentiality and Conflicts of Interest
We treat all information received as confidential matters, including inquiries. All our employees are bound by confidentiality. We will not disclose information to a third party without a client’s prior consent, except when required to do so by law. Our clients authorise us to disclose all such information to associates overseas, or to third-party advisors, whom we instruct on their behalf in relation to specific engagements.
In the case of a possible conflict of interests, or a conflict of cases, we reserve the right to terminate our services with due notice.
We expect our clients to keep us informed of any potential conflicts of interest which may arise and come to their attention. For our part, we always do our best to pay heed to any matters which could have a negative effect on our competence to act on a clients’ behalf.
We rely on our clients to give us timely, complete, and accurate information and instructions. Registration authorities often impose strict time limits for dealing with procedural steps of various kinds, including replying to official actions and submitting information and data, and failure to meet these deadlines may lead to rights being irrevocably lost. We do not accept any liability for loss of rights if a client has not provided clear and complete instructions early enough for us to act there upon within the time limit set. We shall advice of any time limit set and of actions or instructions which are required.
Unless a client advises us in writing to the contrary, we shall be entitled to rely upon instructions and information provided by any employee, director, officer, or such other person who holds him or herself out as having the authority to provide us with such instructions or information on a client’s behalf.
In urgent cases, we will, if necessary, carry out work based on oral instructions alone.
It is our policy to send a short written confirmation of the acceptance of the service to be performed, including the scope of the work, the delivery time, and our best estimate of the cost. The estimated cost may change if the scope of the work and/or the requested service is redefined or changed.
We expect our clients to provide us with all the relevant and necessary information so that we can perform our services to them in a diligent manner.
We will often require information and instructions from our clients to observe time limits set by authorities. Consequently, our clients must provide us with all the relevant information in due time. If we do not receive such information, we cannot accept liability for any possible resulting loss of rights.
We accept written instructions by post, fax, or e-mail. When correspondence is sent to us by fax or e-mail it will be deemed to have been received by us at the time of receipt during our normal business hours (09.00-16.00 GMT). If receipt of the transmission or e-mail occurs after 16.00 GMT, we reserve the right to consider it received at 09.00 GMT on the next working day following the day of transmission.
It is our practice to communicate by e-mail whenever possible. Although this is usually a very efficient means of communication, there are inherent risks involved, including issues of security, confidentiality, corruption of data, and viruses. Clients agree that we will not be liable to any error, loss, or claim arising as a result of e-mail correspondence. If a client does not wish to communicate through e-mail, or if a client wishes to use encrypted e-mail, please inform us of the same in writing.
Work with Outside Experts
For obtaining and/or challenging IP rights (patents, trademarks, registered designs, or domain names) in countries other than Iceland, we will normally instruct attorneys, or other representatives in the countries concerned to act on a client’s behalf. We have an extensive network of professional contacts worldwide, with whom we closely cooperate. We will use our best judgement in selecting appropriately qualified and experienced attorneys, or representatives, but we cannot take responsibility for errors, or omissions which may occur on their part. If a client wishes us to instruct a particular firm or representative in any country, or otherwise wishes to be involved in the selection of a cooperating party, please let us know.
Our files may have to be destroyed when they are no longer needed. Therefore, clients are asked to please notify us as soon as possible if they require the return of any paper copies, or other materials in our safekeeping.
Invoices are generally issued for individual cases on a monthly basis, or when we have completed a specific or significant task. Invoices will specify disbursements in accordance with our current prices, and contractual terms.
Unless otherwise agreed, we will regard instructions from an organisation, or an individual as responsibility to settle invoices arising from such matters.
Terms of payment are 30 days net from the invoice date. In the event of delayed payment, 1% interest rates per month are payable, according to the condition specified on the invoice, unless otherwise agreed upon.
In case a client fails to settle our invoices duly and fails to enter into an agreement with us concerning payment, we reserve the right to defer providing additional services, or to discontinue our services.
Breakdown of Cost
For each individual assignment, the costs charged are broken down into hourly fees, fixed fees, expenses, mark-up on expenses, and – when applicable – governmental taxes, such as VAT.
We reserve the right to request an advance payment before an assignment commences. The amount of such an advance payment is determined based on the extent of the respective assignment.
All actions and monitoring carried out by us are chargeable. These include, without limitation, telephone calls, reminders, meetings, maintenance of a database deadlines and actions, and reporting communications that we may receive as a client’s agent. We will also charge for time spent travelling on a client’s behalf, and for all reasonable travel and subsistence expenses incurred during such travels.
The charging structure of Arnason Faktor is a combination of hourly charges for all employees, service charges for specific items – such as filing of patent, trademark, and design applications, or domain name registrations – and specified items, such as document preparation and transmission.
When an assignment is performed, please note that hourly rates depend both upon the nature of the case and the skills required to perform said assignment, as well as the experience and seniority of our employees.
Most assignments entail disbursements of various kinds. All out-of-pocket expenses paid on a client’s behalf, apart from official charges payable to the Icelandic authorities, are passed on with a mark-up to cover our handling, currency costs, capital costs, as well as bad payment risk.
Upon request, we provide an estimate of future costs associated with our work. Estimates will be provided based on fee schedules and exchange rates at the time of the estimate. Our estimates are to be regarded as guidelines only and are not binding. Actual costs incurred on the behalf of our clients may be affected by matters beyond our control; in particular, where costs are based on time charges, the amount of work involved may not always be estimated accurately.
Until credit terms have been agreed upon, we reserve the right to require funds in advance, in relation to the total expected costs in a particular matter. Within any agreed credit limit, our invoices are payable net monthly. Unless a client has made a special arrangement with us, we normally require funds in advance to cover any disbursements required to be made on said client’s behalf.
We reserve the right to charge penalty interest on any account not settled within 30 days, in accordance with the current rate of interest as decided by the National Bank of Iceland.
If any payment due to us is not made in proper time, we reserve the right to suspend further work, giving a client notice that we have done so. Important and valuable rights may be lost in this event, for which we shall have no liability, irrespective of whether we have specifically notified a client of the possibility of the loss of the rights in question.
VAT is chargeable to our Icelandic clients on our fees.
Termination of Cooperation
In a case where cooperation with a client is terminated, it is our policy to keep all files and records for at least a period of five years, unless otherwise instructed or agreed upon. We provide copies of any documents and communications pertaining to said client upon request.
Our files may be destroyed when they are no longer current, and clients should therefore let us know if they require the return of any material previously sent to us.
If work is transferred from us to another representative, and all payments due to us have been made, the respective files are transferred in their entirety to the new representative.
Codes of Conduct
Our patent attorneys are bound by the codes of conducts of the Icelandic Association of Patent and Trademark Representatives, and/or the Institute of Professional Representatives before the European Patent Office (epi). Our trademark attorneys are bound by the Icelandic Association of Patent and Trademark Representatives’ code of conduct.
Insurance and Limitation of Liability
The general Icelandic law of damages shall be applicable, provided always that we shall not be liable for business interruption, loss of profit, or any other indirect loss suffered.
We carry a professional liability insurance, covering any professional liability in damages in connection with the handling of cases. Our professional liability insurance policy is available for inspection upon request, allowing a reasonable time frame.
Governing Law and Venue
Any interpretation of these business terms shall be construed in accordance with the general principles of Icelandic law.
In the event of any dispute arising regarding the application, content, or performance carried out according to these business terms, both parties shall attempt to settle such disputes amicably. If efforts to reconcile are unsuccessful, the dispute shall be submitted to the district court of Reykjavik.
No material changes to these terms are valid unless agreed on in writing by at least one partner of the firm. Should any questions arise, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Reykjavik, 1. December 2018