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Tom Hutchinson "Practical Intellectual Property"


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This is the second presentation in IP North West's seminar on IP law on 12 Oct 2011. This talk was presented by patent agent, Tom Hutchinson, principal of Hutchinson IP. In his talk, Tom considers "What is IP", "Why it is important?", "Types of IP", "Patent Attorneys" and "Tom's Top Tips". Tom is particularly well qualified to talk to FabLab because he researched additive manufacturing technology before he became a patent agent.

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Tom Hutchinson "Practical Intellectual Property"

  1. 1. Practical ˆIntellectual Property Tom Hutchinson Manchester Fab Lab 12 October 2011
  2. 2. ScopeWhat is IPWhy is it importantTypes of IPPatentsPatent attorneysTop tips
  3. 3. allIntellectual property is about ˆgaining, and protecting acompetitive edge
  4. 4. Types of IP Copyright Other Know-how Dance & mime Trade secrets Reputation Photographs Inside knowledge Music Literature Films One-off Slogans products Inventions Graphics Patents Trade names Product Applications for appearance Concepts new discoveries Get-up Packaging Improvements to products Goodwill or processes Trade marks Designs
  5. 5. Why use IP?To prevent others from copying your ideasTo have something tangible to sell/licenseTo reassure investorsTo block competitorsTo “muddy the waters”
  6. 6. When to use IP?If the IP is valuable and if its valueoutweighs the cost of obtaining andenforcing it
  7. 7. IP costsObtaining Patents - £3k - £10k, per country Designs - £600, per country Trade marks - £900, per countryMaintaining Patents - £100 - £1000, per year Designs - £50 - £200, per year Trade marks - £50 - £500, per yearEnforcing A quick “spat” - £1,000, per side At the IPO - £10,000, per side In court - £50,000 - £500,000, per side
  8. 8. When not to use IPJust because you canIf the value of the market or the profitability ofthe product is too smallIf you do not have the means to enforce it
  9. 9. PatentsA patent is a fixed-term monopoly given by thegovernment to inventors on new, non-obvious anduseful technologies in exchange for a completepublic disclosure of how the invention works
  10. 10. PatentabilityA patent may be granted only for an invention inrespect of which the following conditions aresatisfied, that is to say- (a) the invention is new (b) it involves an inventive step (c) it is capable of industrial application (d)the grant of a patent is not excluded…
  11. 11. Novelty
  12. 12. Inventive step
  13. 13. Application procedure Filing Filing Filing Search Search Search Publication Publication Publication Examination Examination Examination Amendment Amendment Amendment Grant Grant Validation Maintenance
  14. 14. What is a patent attorney?Someone with a technical background and trainingand qualifications in substantive IP lawExperience in acting before the IPOs and theCourts and with other legal/technical/businessadvisors
  15. 15. My background
  16. 16. Claims
  17. 17. Patent searchingUp to 40% of UK research is wastedNearly all patents that have been granted in the last100 years are available to the publicMostly free of chargeMostly on-linePatents are classified to make them easier to searchHave you referenced any patent specifications in yourmost recent literature review?Are you currently re-inventing the wheel?
  18. 18. Tip 1 – dates are important
  19. 19. Tip 2 – keep quiet
  20. 20. Tip 3 – never threaten
  21. 21. Tip 4 – do your research
  22. 22. Tip 5 – seek professional advice