About Us

Experienced and Authoritative with world-wide cover

Since 1980, Computalaw has been the legal pioneer in advising and drafting leading-edge contracts with its specialist team of leading lawyers from all over the world for clients at the forefront of ecommerce, business innovation, internet, software, Cloud computing and online/web-based businesses, large or small, from start-ups to multi-nationals and even law firms.
Our Global Contract Authors and Contributors

M.-T. Michèle Rennie (LLB, NP), is Head of Intellectual Property and Internet Law at Computalaw Ltd, with offices in London, Edinburgh and Port Louis, which gives online advice through http://www.computalaw.com. Michèle has specialised in intellectual property and internet law worldwide since 1980 and has acted as legal adviser to hundreds of IT companies round the world, including many multinationals.

In addition, Michèle is legal advisor to numerous smaller pioneering companies in specialist niche areas such as an award-winning digital signature company which created and implemented new electronic signature technology for remote document signing worldwide; a Cloud Computing company creating ‘Apps’ and mobile phone payment systems for the financial sector; a collaboration of US and EU companies providing certification services to the aerospace and other safety critical industries; and most recently, legal advisor to an exciting new technology company harnessing satellite data intelligence for environmental analysis and statistics required by multi-national organisations such as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Michèle has been a member of the International Bar Association Committee on International Computer & Technology Law since 1980. She was chairman of the British Computer Society Ecommerce Legal Task Group (1999–2004) and a member of the Intellectual Property and Electronic Commerce working parties of the European Informatics Market (EURIM). During 2004 Michèle was legal adviser to the CTOSE Foundation which was established to promote the results of the European Commission-sponsored CTOSE Project on Cybercrime which is now utilised worldwide.

Publications: Michèle is a regular conference speaker and is the author of several publications on International Computer and Internet Contracts and Law (Sweet & Maxwell/Thomson) in 1985, 1989 and the latest in 1994–2017, which is updated annually. This publication contains over 6,000 pages of computer and internet contracts and intellectual property law relating to UK, Europe, the United States, Japan, Australia, India, China and the internet.

Michèle is also the Editor of Computer and Telecommunications Law Review (CTLR) since 1999 for which she edits and writes IPR articles. She has also written for the British Government’s Parliamentary Information Technology Committee Journal (Pitcom) written/contributed to briefing papers and research documents for the UK Members of Parliament and Members of the European Parliament through her membership of European Informatics (EURIM) and the British Computer Society.

US Contributors:

David Bender (Sc.B, LLB, LLM) was Senior Privacy Counsel in the New York City office of DLA Piper US LLP, where he specialised in litigation, transactional matters and counselling in the areas of privacy, intellectual property and information technology law. He was previously Of Counsel at White & Case LLP, and prior to that served as head of AT&T’s IP Litigation Department, where he was responsible for all IP litigation brought by or against any Bell System company. He is a past President of the Computer Law Association. David now teaches Privacy Law at University of Houston Law School, writes the Privacy Law column in the New York Law Journal and updates this Computer Law treatise twice a year.

Publications: David is the author of COMPUTER LAW, a four-volume treatise published by Lexis-Nexis’ Matthew Bender, and updated twice annually. He is also a member of the Editorial Boards of Computer Lawyer, Cyberspace Lawyer, and Computer Technology Law Report, and has written numerous law review articles in the fields of IT law, IP law and anti-trust law. David has made presentations on various topics in those fields at more than 200 seminars in the United States and some 15 other countries, and is the author of several dozen papers published in diverse seminar handbooks.

David has an Sc.B in Applied Math from Brown University, an LLB from the University of Pennsylvania, and LLM in Patent Law from George Washington University, and an SJD (specialising in Computer Law) from George Washington. In a previous life, David served as an engineer with Ford Aerospace, and as a mathematician with Hughes Aircraft.

J. T. ("Jay") Westermeier (LL.M, JD, MBA) was Attorney at Law with Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP in Reston, Virginia prior to which he was a partner in DLA Piper US LLP, resident in its Reston, Virginia office. He has been involved in all aspects of information technology, including intellectual property, technology licensing and other forms of technology contracts, risk management, domestic and international distribution, corporate, litigation, arbitration and mediation. He represents emerging and established software, internet, electronic commerce and other information technology companies as well as information technology users and suppliers.

Jay is the only lawyer ever to receive the Distinguished Information Sciences Award, the highest award presented annually by the Association of Information Technology Professionals. He is a past president of the International Technology Law Association (formerly known as the Computer Law Association), the world’s largest association of its kind with members in 60 countries. He also served as the Chairman of the American Bar Association’s committee on professionalism of computer specialists under the Science and Technology Section, Co-Chair of the DC Bar’s Computer and Telecommunications Section and Director of the DC Computer Law Forum. He was appointed by the Governor of Virginia and approved by the Virginia Assembly to serve a four-year term on the Council on Information Management for the Commonwealth of Virginia.

He is also a Life Fellow of the American Bar Foundation and listed in Intellectual Asset Management magazine’s "IAM250—The World’s Leading IP Strategists" (2009, 2010); The International Who’s Who of Internet, e-Commerce & Data Protection Lawyers (2009, 2011); Best Attorneys in America (Information Technology, 2001–2011); Virginia Super Lawyers (Intellectual Property, 2006–2010); Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers (Intellectual Property; 2007–2010); Super Lawyers Corporate Edition of Top Attorneys in Business Services (Intellectual Property, 2009–2010), The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers (2008, 2010); and many other lists of distinction. He serves on or has served on the advisory boards for the Computer Law Reporter, E-Commerce Law & Strategy, BNA’s Computer Technology Law, BNA’s Electronic Commerce & Law, Commercial Law Advisor, Intellectual Property Counselor, Internet Law and Business, and Information Strategy: The Executives Journal. He is a US correspondent for Computer Law Review International.

He is the founder of the Georgetown University Law Center’s Advanced Computer and Internet Law Institute (1989–2005) and Co-Founder of the Virginia Bar’s Virginia Information Technology Legal Institute (2002 to date). He has edited several books on computer law, contributed to a number of computer law treaties, including Documenting E-Commerce Transactions (Business Laws, Inc), Drafting License Agreements (Aspen Law) and Data Security and Privacy Law: Combating Cyber Threats (West Group), published more than 200 articles on legal issues related to information technology and has lectured at conferences, seminars and programs all over the world on numerous computer and internet-related legal topics, and received the Burton Award for legal excellence in 2001.

Jay is a member of the Virginia, DC and Maryland Bars, and numerous courts. He litigates cases in state and federal courts, and serves as a mediator, arbitrator and expert legal witness.

Education: Jay is a West Point graduate. In addition to his BS from USMA (1963), Jay has an MBA (1969) and LLM (1978) from George Washington University and JD from American University (1974) where he served as Articles Editor of the American University Law Review. Jay is also certified as a Certified Computer Professional (CCP) by the Institute for the Certification of Computer Professionals.

Chinese Contributor:

Prof. Dr. Hong Xue is Law Professor at Beijing Normal University, Director of Institute for Internet Policy & Law (IIPL) and Co-Director of United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) and Beijing Normal University (BNU) Joint Certificate Program on International E-Commerce Law. Prof. Xue is a China-Law-Society elected Top Ten Nationally Distinguished Young Jurists and enjoys the State Council Special Governmental Allowance for the national experts.

She is on the Chinese National People’s Congress Expert Panel for Drafting the E-Commerce Law, the Advisory Committee of the United Nations Network of Experts for Paperless Trade in Asia and the Pacific (UNNExT) and 2nd APEC E-Commerce Business Alliance Expert Council. She is an arbitrator at China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (CIETAC) and a World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) panelist. She is the Chair of Council of Chinese Domain Name Users Alliance and the Faculty Chair of Asia Pacific Internet Leadership Project (APILP) Beijing. Prof.

Xue had taught in law schools in Australia, United States and Hong Kong and was the Residential Fellow of Yale Information Society Project, ICANN ccNSO Councilor and the Chinese Coordinator for Global Academy on Access to Knowledge. Prof. Xue researches international trade law, information technology law, electronic commerce law, intellectual property law and Internet governance and had published many books and journal articles.

Publications: As well as writing the Chinese Section to International Computer and Internet Contracts and Law, Prof. Xue is author of International Intellectual Property Law @ Crossroad published by China Law Press as well as many other books and publications.

Indian Contributors:

Shalini Agarwal (LLB, LLM Cantab.) is founding partner at In Se Legal. In Se Legal advises clients on matters relating to Indian law and jurisdiction. Shalini has regularly been advising clients on cross-border transactions relating to India, including joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, distribution/agency agreements and contractual arrangements. Her practice areas include advising on employment law, international contracts, Information technology and Intellectual Property law. Shalini represents several US, UK and European companies, guiding them on various aspects of doing business in India.

Ganesh Prasad - Affiliated with Khaitan & Co., Shalini works with partner, Ganesh Prasad (LLB). Ganesh specializes in domestic and foreign venture capital and private equity investments in a variety of sectors, including financial services, insurance, education, human resource consultancy, real estate development, IT and IT services. He holds an advance diploma in network computing and software from the National Institute of Information Technology. He has also assisted several start-ups and growth stage companies as well as public listed companies in receiving financial and strategic investments.

European Co-Contributor:

Philip Woolfson (M.A., LL.B) is a partner of Steptoe & Johnson LLP, a US firm of lawyers based in Brussels with its head office in Washington DC. He is also an Advocat at the Paris bar. He is a graduate of the College of Europe, Bruges, Belgium. His practice concentrates on Community law and French law, in particular in relation to cross-border provision of services, data protection, competition law and financial services.

Australian Contributor:

Anna Sharpe (LL.B. (Hons), LL.M)(Grad Dip App Corp Gov, ACIS, ASCA) is the principal of the law firm Sharpe Ivo, and is a respected transactional intellectual property, information technology and data protection lawyer. She appears in the Australian Financial Review’s lists of the Best Lawyers of Australia and is named as one of Australia’s Best Women Lawyers—IP in Doyle’s Guide to Best Australian Firms. She has been named in Chamber’s Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business, AsiaLaw Leading Lawyers, and Who’s Who of Australian Women. Anna is the trademark law course co-ordinator and lecturer for the WIPO—Queensland University of Technology Masters of Intellectual Property Law program. She is on the Law Council of Australia’s Intellectual Property committee. Anna has been a Board member of various entities, including the Queensland Music Festival, the former National Procurement Board, and the Plant Breeder’s Rights advisory committee.

Publications: Anna is author of Credit Acts Handbook (Law Book Company, 1986) and co-author of Computer Contracts: Principles & Precedents—Computer Contracts section (Thomson). She has also published over 200 articles in professional and technical journals.

Japanese Contributors:

Takashi Kanai (LL.B., LL.M) is an attorney-at-law at Frantech Law Office Tokyo. His practice involves computer-related contract law; Unfair Competition Prevention Law; Trademark, copyright, Product Liability, company law, franchising and intellectual property law and international finance. He has studied at Keio University, Japan, Cornell University Law School, USA and Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London. He is a member of Dai-ni Tokyo Bar Association, Japan Trademark Association, Risk Management Consultant Association of Japan and of the Committee on Unfair Competition Prevention Law (Institute of Intellectual Property).

Publications: He is the author of "Computer Program and Database Protection in Japan" (co-authored by Kei Amemiya) (in English language) "Franchisor's Duty to Disclose under Franchise Agreement at its Conclusion" (1994) (in Japanese language) "Franchisee's Confidentiality Duty and Non-Competition Duty under Franchise Agreement" (1995) (in Japanese language) "Franchise Agreement and Product Liability Law" (1995) (in Japanese language) "Bankruptcy Issues under Franchise System" (1997) (in the Japanese language) "Copyright Issues on Graphics" (included in "Copyright Issues on Homepages" edited by Internet Lawyers Conference, 1997) (in the Japanese language).

Wakaba Hara (LL.B., LL.M) is in private practise at Makino-Law, prior to which she worked for the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Mitsui, Yasuda, Wani & Maeda, Tokyo. Her work involves all areas of intellectual property law and corporate law focusing on international protection of intellectual property. She studied at Keio University, Japan; the Legal Research and Training Institute of the Supreme Court of Japan and Columbia University School of Law, United States. She is a member of Dai-ichi Tokyo Bar Association and Japan Federation of Bar Associations since 1990.

Electronic and Digital Signatures - Specialist Contributor:

Stephen Mason is a barrister (http://www.stephenmason.eu) with an interest in electronic signatures, authentication, security, electronic evidence, email and internet use, and interception and monitoring of communications. He isa member of the IT Panel of the General Council of the Bar of England and Wales, an Associate Research Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies in London, and an independent director of tScheme Limited (tScheme is the national body responsible for accreditation and supervision referred to in article 3(4) of the EU electronic signature Directive).

Publications: He is the author of Electronic Signatures in Law, 3rd edn (Cambridge University Press, 2012), Electronic Banking: Protecting Your Rights (PP Publishing, 2012), and the general editor of Electronic Evidence, 3rd edn (LexisNexis Butterworths, 2012) and International Electronic Evidence (British Institute of International and Comparative Law, 2008). He is also the founder, general editor and publisher of the international journal Digital Evidence and Electronic Signature Law Review http://www.deaeslr.org/ which has become an international focal point for researchers in the area. To encourage people to take the virtual world seriously, he wrote his first espionage novel (including a passing reference to lawyers) under the pseudonym of Felix M Temple, The World’s a Minefield (2009).

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Specialist Contributor:

Professor Dr. Pablo Cortés (LLB, LLM, PhD) is Professor of Civil Justice. Licenciado (Vigo), LLM (Limerick), PhD (Cork) Member of the Spanish Bar, Ávila (non-practising), Certified as Catedrático in Spain (ANECA).

Pablo Cortés has a chair in Civil Justice at Leicester Law School where he teaches and conducts research in the field of dispute resolution, civil procedure and consumer law. He has published three books in the field of technology and dispute resolution, and has been invited to speak in many international conferences in 17 different countries, including two keynotes. He has been invited to various expert meetings, including by the UN Commission for International Trade Law (UNCITRAL WG III), and to write reports and speak at public hearings by the European Commission (DG SANCO and DG JUSTICE) and the European Parliament (IMCO and JURI–Committee of Legal Affairs).

He is a fellow of the National Centre for Technology and Dispute Resolutions (University of Massachusetts –Amherst) and in 2012 he was a Gould Research Fellow at Stanford University. He is a member of the Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) Taskforce of the International Mediation Institute and of the ODR Advisory Group of the Civil Justice Council, which first proposed the launch of the Online Court in England and Wales. He has been employed as a consultant for a number of organization, including to assist the European Commission in the drafting of the legislative proposals for the ADR Directive and the ODR Regulation.

Pablo has recently completed two substantial research projects. The first one was a research grant awarded by the European Commission as part of a consortium of universities with the task of proposing legislative action to promote online mediation for civil and commercial matters. The second grant was awarded by the Nuffield Foundation to evaluate from a socio-legal perspective the main consumer ADR schemes operating in the EU.

The research findings have appeared in an edited collection he coordinated: The Transformation of Consumer Dispute Resolution in the European Union (Oxford University Press, 2016) and in his forthcoming book The Law of Consumer Redress in an Evolving Digital Market (Cambridge University Press, 2017).