Type Speaker CPD Hours Level
5 UpdateInformation
Accreditation Information
SRA Competency B


Chaired by Marco Morbidini, this live broadcast conference with a panel of leading experts offers a comprehensive update as to the current hot topics in this fast-moving area.

Each session will provide a full opportunity for questions and answers.

Conference Agenda

This live and interactive 5 hour conference will cover the following:

10am-11am: Freedom to Operate (‘FTO’) Searching - Why, What, Where, When & How?

Speaker: Marco Morbidini, Partner, Kilburn & Strode LLP

The question of whether commercial activities carried out in relation to a new product or service may infringe any third-party IP rights out there is often more important to businesses than that of obtaining their own protection.

Searching is by its nature an open-ended exercise, but time and budget constraints impose practical limits to all FTO activities. Is undertaking FTO searches therefore worthwhile at all?

How can a business maximise the benefits of FTO searching and understand the associated risks and if any threats are identified, what can be done to manage the associated litigation risk?

This session will cover the following:

  • Why it may be desirable to carry out an FTO exercise
  • What needs to be searched (and what needs not)
  • Selecting jurisdictions of interest
  • When during the life-cycle of a product does FTO become important?
  • How to search relevant IP rights
  • Patent landscaping and new search tools
  • How to mitigate infringement risk

Morning Break

11:10am-12:10pm: Patent Protection for Software in Europe - Latest Trends & Developments

Peter Arrowsmith, GJE Intellectual Property

In this session, you will learn about the requirements for protecting software with patents in Europe, including top tips on best practice and the latest developments in the law.

Specifically, it will cover:

  • The Comvik approach for determining patentable subject matter at the EPO, including the meaning of technical character
  • Worked examples to illustrate the kind of inventions that are patentable
  • Latest developments on machine learning and artificial intelligence
  • The UK approach for determining patentable subject matter, and a comparison with the approach at the EPO
  • Latest case law in this area, including an overview of G1/19 - the Enlarged Board of Appeal’s decision involving computer simulations

12:10pm-1:10pm: Patent Box

Dr Jonathan Markham, Partner, Beck Greener LLP

UK and European patents have always provided legal protection for products and processes. However, through the ‘Patent Box’, they can also provide a reduction in corporation tax on worldwide profits from patented products and processes.

The Patent Box scheme was introduced in 2013 and, whilst the rules were tightened in 2016, the scheme can still provide significant benefits.

This session will look at different patent filing strategies which can be implemented to enable businesses to tailor and optimise their approach to protect their innovation whilst taking advantage of the tax benefits of the Patent Box.

It will cover:

  • Background to patents and procedure
  • Background to Patent box
  • Identifying and categorising inventions
  • Different patent filing strategies - balancing patent costs against benefits
  • Business-specific filing strategies - worked examples

Break for lunch

2-3pm: Strategic Use of the English Patents Court in a Unified Patent Court System

Dr Paul England, Patent Lawyer, Taylor Wessing

It is now clear that the UK will not be participating in the Unified Patent Court (‘UPC’) and Unitary Patent.

The project has also been held up by complaints filed at the German Constitutional Court for a number of years. Now those objections in Germany have been resolved, and despite the absence of the UK, political momentum has seemingly built behind the UPC and the Unitary Patent again.

The UPC committee is saying that it expects the UPC to start in mid-2022. Where does this leave English patent litigation, given the size of the market covered by the UPC?

As the second largest economy in Europe, and one of the three most designated countries for the grant of European patents, the English jurisdiction is likely to become even more important in European patent litigation than it is now.

This session will cover the general and specific features of the English system that can interact with procedures of the UPC, both directly and indirectly.

These have the potential to make the English jurisdiction a gateway to an overall European strategy.

Afternoon break

3.15-4.15pm: IP & Space Activities

Dr Jonathan Markham, Partner, Beck Greener LLP

The UK Government has recently published a strategy document setting out ambitions for the UK in space.

The document brings together civil and defence policy for the first time and is a prelude to increasing the UK’s presence in the booming space market, with launch sites in Cornwall and Scotland soon to become operational.

Protection of innovation in this sector will be of critical importance to UK companies.

This session will look at the law surrounding protection of intellectual property rights in space activities with a particular focus on the considerations for protecting patentable inventions in space.

The session will cover:

  • Introduction to space activities
  • Overview of international space law
  • Patent protection for space technology and activities
  • Application of copyright to outer space activities
  • Summary

Recording of live sessions: Soon after the Learn Live session has taken place you will be able to go back and access the recording - should you wish to revisit the material discussed.

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Learn Live | 01.04.2022

N/A | 10:00am - 4:15pm

Hot Topics in Patents - 2022 Virtual Conference

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10:00am - 4:15pm

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Discounts are available for multiple places. If you have 5 or more people interested in participating in this virtual learning session please email us at information@mblseminars.com for more information.

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