Why Clients Use Us

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Comprehensive services

For all businesses, whether small, medium or large, intellectual property can be their single most valuable asset. Our clients believe we have the right hands for their IP, for our breadth of experience combined with our pragmatism.

Our services are comprehensive, in that we can draft and file patent, trade mark and design applications and we can defend or attack granted patents or registered trade marks and designs, in UK, Europe and internationally.

We advise on pre-filing patentability; whether to proceed with filing an application in light of a prior art search report and assessment. We advise on freedom-to-operate and on litigation, both offensive and defensive. IP rights are there to be enforced; they will only work for our clients if competitors fear they will actually be used.

Learning from experience only comes from actually having that experience...

If you are lucky or naive, you will believe you can learn from theory or by watching others. With few exceptions, however, learning from experience only comes from actually having that experience. In that we are fortunate at Schlich, as our attorneys are doers not observers: George specializes in EPO proceedings but further afield has interviewed US Patent Examiners in Washington, D.C, at the US Patent and Trademark Office; this pushes forward US patents better than you can imagine. Andrew has handled multi-party oppositions at the EPO. Mike has handled multi-party EPO oppositions and appeals too. The team has in the past 12 months filed or is lined up to defend in excess of 20 oppositions or appeals at the EPO. We pool the knowledge from hearings so we always share the learning from each trip. At EUIPO we have multiple trade mark oppositions pending and also proceedings relating to design validity.

Only a small proportion of clients encounter these contested proceedings regularly, if at all. We mention them because it is often only when you witness how opponents or the authorities dissect and attack and push and pull, and otherwise distort the language of the patent - the same language you are reading slightly differently - that you realise quite how patents should be framed to resist the attacks of the future. Put another way, in multi-party proceedings attacking patent validity, you learn how to draft patent applications; and in trade mark oppositions, you learn which marks and specifications of services are the more defensible.

Our day-to-day patent and trade mark filings are better for our experiences at the contentious coal-face of the court. Our clients then take full advantage.