Hemalatha is a litigator specialising in IP, life sciences and healthcare including product liability.
Her practice includes a variety of areas of advisory and litigation, focusing on intellectual property law and product liability. She has represented a variety of clients ranging from small to medium scaled industries as well as large multinational companies on a number of complex and high value intellectual property matters including patent, copyright, industrial design and trade mark infringement, passing off, trade libel, malicious falsehood, domain name disputes and so forth. She has also represented pharmaceutical companies involving a variety of high profile and complex product liability litigation and provided advisory work on complex product liability issues involving car parts and car manufacturers.
She has been noted in the Legal 500 of Asia-Pacific for many years for her intellectual property work done for Dart Industries Inc and their subsidiary, Tupperware Brands Malaysia Sdn Bhd.
She is a certified member of the Malaysian Mediators Centre, a Mediator empanelled with the World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO) based in Geneva, Switzerland and also serves as a Domain Name Dispute Resolution Panellist at the AIAC.
Key Practice Areas
- IP Litigation and Enforcement
- Life Sciences and Healthcare
- Product Liability
- General and Alternative Dispute Resolution
- Lead Counsel on over at least 30 suits representing Dart Industries Inc. (Dart) and their Malaysian affiliate, Tupperware Brands Malaysia Sdn Bhd (TBM), between 2012 – 2019 at various levels of Court. Cases have ranged over a variety of their registered industrial designs and against a variety of Defendants. These claims have ranged from breaches of copyright, infringement of registered industrial design, trade libel, defamation, malicious falsehood, breach of confidential information, domain name disputes, trade mark infringement and so on. Over the years, Dart and TBM have been successful in obtaining findings of contempt, interlocutory injunctions, permanent injunctions and a variety of interlocutory remedies against their Opponents. Dart and TBM have secured damages and delivery up of infringing products and various without prejudice forum has been created for the resolution of claims against multiple Opponents. This includes four interlocutory injunctions obtained against CMN International Sdn Bhd and four post-trial judgments in favour of the Plaintiffs which have since been reported.
- Lead Counsel for a globally renowned oil and gas company in a few actions for trade mark infringement, passing off and breach of the Trade Description Act 2011 (“TDA”).
- Lead Counsel representing various individual ex-employees in a variety of cases involving breach of confidential claims and successfully resisting interlocutory injunctions.
- Co-Counsel representing the defendant in a case that involved an industrial design and copyright infringement claim made by a multinational wholly owned Japanese corporation in respect of a range of their motor scooters and motorcycles.
- Co-Counsel representing the defendant in an action where a claim was brought by a well-known Formula One related tyre maker (the Applicant) to expunge and/or amend the respondent’s (client) registered trade mark.
- Co-Counsel representing the defendant in an industrial design infringement action where the claimant, a major global fruit juice company filed an action against client, another major fruit juice producer globally for industrial design infringement of the design of their bottle.
- Lead Counsel on over multiple actions representing a pharmaceutical and medical device company that involved tortious and other issues of product liability under the Consumer Protection Act 1987 (‘CPA’) concerning a recalled medical device and that required construction of a defence of state of the art and developmental risks. Litigation involving this has led to successful outcomes in favour of the pharmaceutical company.
- Lead Counsel defending a pharmaceutical and medical device company concerning a claim of tortious and product liability under the Consumer Protection Act 1987 (‘CPA’) where issues of state of the art, informed consent, the learned intermediary defence and so forth were involved.
- Lead Counsel representing a tele-communications company in a variety of issues including allegations of wrongful termination of contract and Norwich Pharmacal discovery actions.
- Trade Mark Agent
- Certificate in Patent Drafting (2013)
- Certificate in Mediation (2010)
- Advocate and Solicitor, High Court of Malaya (2007)
- Certificate of Legal Practice (2006)
- LL.B (Upper Second Class Honours), University of London (External) (2005)
- B.Sc (Lower Second Class Honours), University of Malaya (2000)
- Panel of Accredited Mediators, Malaysian Mediation Centre
- Domain Name Dispute Resolution Panellist, Asian International Arbitration Centre
- Mediator empanelled with the World Intellectual Property Office(WIPO)
- Member, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (MCIArb)
- Member, Malaysian Bar Intellectual Property Committee
- Member, Malaysian Bar Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee
Presented the following talks:
- Speaker and Panellist at the Asian International Arbitration Centre event – ADR and 21st Century Diplomacy – An Introduction to ADR for Asia’s Diplomatic Corps 2019
- Speaker and Panellist at the Medico-Legal Society of Malaysia’s Annual National Conference 2019 on the topic Medico-Legal Liability related to New Technology
- Speaker at the Medico-Pharmaco Legal Conference 2019 on the topic ‘Tort Liability in relation to Drug and Device Information’
- Speaker at the 7th Sabah Medico-Legal Conference 2019 and spoke on Medico-Legal Liability related to New Technology
- Moderator of the panel ‘Lessons from the Tech Giant Battles : New Trends of Resolving Technology and Patent-related Disputes in the People’s Republic of China’ at the Kuala Lumpur Summit on Commercial Dispute Resolution in China 2019 event organised by the Asian International Arbitration Centre
- Speaker, "Asian Alternative Dispute Resolution Week 2018 Conference: Getting the Deal Through", organised by the Asian International Arbitration Centre, 2018.
- Panellist, "International Conference on Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biotechnology 2018", organised by the Malaysian Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Society and Malaysian Molecular Biology and Biotechnology Society, 2018.
- Speaker, "Workshop on UDRP Rules: Expert approach to initiating domain name dispute", organised by the Asian International Arbitration Centre (AIAC), 2018.
- Speaker, “Legal Aspects of Medicine: What medical students should know”, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Bioethics Symposium, 2018.
- Speaker, “Wheels of Change: A Legal Perspective on the Automobile Industry in Malaysia”, Lex Mundi Webinar on Intellectual Property Rights, 2016.
Authored the following articles:
- Author, "The changing landscape of product liability law", Asian Alternative Dispute Resolution Week 2018 Conference booklet.
- Author, "Functionality and Visibility in Design Patent (Registration) in Malaysia", part of the Data Bank for Intellectual Property Information from Emerging Nations on the invitation of NGB and JPO/INPIT, 2017.
- Co-author, Practice Guidance Module on “Dispute Resolution: Mediation”, LexisNexis, 2016.
- Author, “Are Spare Parts Protected as Registered Designs?”, Skrine’s Legal Insights Issue 4/2015.
- Author, “What Maketh a Bottle? – F & N Dairies v Tropicana Inc and other appeals”, World Intellectual Property Reports 2014, Bloomberg BNA.