Apple’s position in the iPad trademark lawsuit is set to become a little more complicated after it was revealed this morning that Chinese creditors have appealed for Taiwanese electronic firm Proview to be put into liquidation, freezing the case in accordance with Chinese law.
WantChinaTimes reports that Proview creditor Fubon Insurance is making the move, as it seeks to reclaim debts totalling $8.68 million as of November 2010.
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Fubon had applied for Proview’s remaining assets to be liquidated in June 2011 after the company has failed to comply with the ruling for six months, so with the deadline on the decision already passed, Fubon’s laywers applied to the court for an expedited ruling on February 20.
A decision is expected to be reached soon, and if it is approved, Proview’s lawsuit against Apple will be immediately halted.
Proview has said that it would be able to meet any financial obligations in the future, basing them solely on resulting damages or settlements from the Apple trademark lawsuit. Fubon moved to reject such claims, arguing that Proview could not base its ability to repay on the outcome of a case that has not reached a conclusion.
The revised suit alleged that Apple purchased the rights to the trademark using fraud and unfair competition when it secured a deal through UK-based shell company IP Application Development Limited, known as IPAD. As such, Proview has sought worldwide rights to the term.
Referring to liquidation reports, Proview lawyer Ma Dongxiao told the AP that “the company believes its financial problems won’t affect the handling of a court case in which Apple is appealing a ruling against its claim to the iPad trademark in China.”
With the chances of a settlement from Apple high, Proview may be forced to pursue talks with the world’s biggest technology company before legal proceedings are halted. Proview is reported to hold debts as high as $2 billion, with just $320 million in assets.