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Intellectual Property

United Kingdom

Our market-leading intellectual property team is the largest dedicated IP team in the UK. CMS was Awarded ‘Best Law Firm in IP, IT & TMT’ at the Trends Legal Awards in 2019. We house one of London’s most experienced and formidable IP litigation practices. Uniquely among large law firms, we also offer a significant patent, trade mark and design attorney team with true technical and legal expertise. And of course we help our clients in complex licensing and exploitation in the world’s most highly regulated sectors. Our team has earned multiple Band 1 ratings from legal directories.

Our team includes 130 lawyers, patent attorneys, trade mark attorneys, and specialist IP administrators and paralegals. This means our team is qualified to file complex patents in cutting-edge technologies at the European Patent Office; manage and enforce portfolios for some of the world’s biggest brand owners; and handle the most complex and technically demanding IP disputes.

We handle the full life-cycle of IP assets, including finding the best strategy for the creation, identification, registration and capture of assets, their realisation through commercial agreements and licensing, and their protection and enforcement through litigation and other dispute resolution.

A cohesive IP strategy, including both commercialisation and enforcement, will ensure that maximum value is obtained from your IP portfolio. Our team understands your business needs and objectives and has worked with some of the world’s best known brands. Our clients include organisations from banks to technology companies, pharmaceuticals to FMCG, and we help them realise their commercial goals.

We also advise on IP enforcement at all levels of UK courts (civil and criminal) and have experience litigating before the CJEU as well as many national courts of the EU and beyond in multi-jurisdictional disputes. Our patent and trade mark teams are experienced in dealing with proceedings before UKIPO, EUIPO and European Patent Office.  Costs can quickly escalate in contentious proceedings, so project management is key to our service, driving forward cases, narrowing issues, and managing other service providers.

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"CMS' intellectual property department is 'excellent for high level and complex questions', and offers 'a good mix of very sound legal advice and practical tips'. The 'personable and easy to work with' team comprises of 25 partners, following the merger of CMS, Nabarro and Olswang in May 2017, and attracts praise for its 'good pragmatic commercial advice' across the spectrum of IP rights."

Legal 500, 2019

“Among firms in London, CMS is virtually unrivalled in terms of the breadth, depth, international reach and technical sophistication of its brands practice.”

World Trademark Review 1000, 2019

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    Brexit

    Brexit will have no consequence on UK membership of the European Patent Organisation (EPO), nor on the effect of European patents in the UK. Accordingly, CMS European patent attorneys based in the UK will continue to be able to represent applicants before the EPO.

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    Due Diligence

    Intellectual Property rights are commonly bought, sold or licensed as part of a corporate deal or transaction, and often represent a key element of a due diligence process. Our team of specialist solicitors, patent attorneys and trade mark attorneys are able to provide a commercially valuable assessment of an IP portfolio, either as part of deal process or as a stand-alone ‘health-check’. 

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    Life Sciences Regulatory

    Legal and regulatory frameworks are constantly evolving in the life sciences sector to keep up with innovative therapies, diagnostics and other medical technologies, as well as increasing services provision by manufacturers and other suppliers. In such a highly regulated and much scrutinised sector we understand you need a legal team who can proactively advise on your legal and regulatory risk.

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    Patent Attorneys

    The CMS patent attorney practice disrupts the traditional boutique approach to provide a service that meets the needs of modern business practice.  Using proven, robust and efficient processes to manage portfolios through the patenting process, we pour care and attention into every detail, whether a portfolio’s value comes from its size or from the key nature of one or a small number of cases.

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    Unified Patent Court

    We are prepared for the Unitary Patent and Unified Patent Court whenever they might come into effect. All CMS European patent attorneys, including those based in the UK, will be able to represent applicants before the EPO and to obtain national patents or Unitary Patents granted via the European Patent Office, even after Brexit. Our team of lawyers and patent attorneys will have rights of audience before the new Unified Patent Court.

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    Law-Now: In­tel­lec­tu­al Prop­erty
    Vis­it Law-Now for leg­al know-how and com­ment­ary
    Pat­ent At­tor­neys - Ex­plore

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    8 September 2020
    Brand re­cog­ni­tion: us­ing IP to add value to real es­tate
    Brand re­cog­ni­tion us­ing IP to add value to real es­tate art­icle from EG Magazine writ­ten by Melanie Worsdall and Louise Gell­man from CMS. Down­load it here.
    22 April 2020
    CMS Ex­pert Guide to COV­ID-19's im­pact on IP leg­al tim­ings
    As in all as­pects of busi­ness, COV­ID-19 is im­pact­ing the world of IP and the po­s­i­tion is con­stantly chan­ging. To help you pri­or­it­ise and plan, the Glob­al IP prac­tice at CMS has put to­geth­er an over­view of COV­ID-19's cur­rent im­pact on pro­ced­ur­al timetables be­fore courts, na­tion­al in­tel­lec­tu­al prop­erty of­fices and key in­ter­na­tion­al IP in­sti­tu­tions.
    21 September 2020
    MESSI vs. MASSI – Li­onel takes three points be­fore the CJEU
    On Thursday 17 Septem­ber 2020 the Court of Justice of the European Uni­on handed down its judg­ment in a trade mark dis­pute dat­ing back to 2011 in­volving Li­onel Messi, the icon­ic FC Bar­celona foot­baller,...
    18 August 2020
    Pro­tect­ing in­nov­a­tion from start to fin­ish
    The CMS pat­ent at­tor­ney prac­tice provides a ser­vice that sees the core val­ues of a cen­tur­ies old pro­fes­sion, work­ing for cli­ents in the mod­ern busi­ness world.
    30 April 2019
    CMS Ex­pert Guide to in­tel­lec­tu­al prop­erty tax­a­tion
    Are you look­ing for in­form­a­tion on in­tel­lec­tu­al prop­erty tax­a­tion? In this CMS Ex­pert Guide, we tell you everything you need to know about it.
    14 September 2020
    An EPO Case Law Round-Up: Ad­ded Mat­ter
    The EPO is well-known for its strict ap­proach to as­sess­ing amend­ments un­der the ad­ded mat­ter pro­vi­sion of Art­icle 123 of the European Pat­ent Con­ven­tion. This of­ten cre­ates com­plex leg­al scen­ari­os which...
    10 July 2020
    Pat­ent­ing in­ven­tions cre­ated us­ing an AI sys­tem
    This CIPA pa­per dis­cusses the pat­ent­ing of in­ven­tions cre­ated us­ing an ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence (AI) sys­tem. You can down­load this in­ter­est­ing pa­per be­low.
    07 September 2020
    3D print­ing and IP: Les­sons from the EPO’s ‘Shap­ing To­mor­row’ con­fer­ence
    IP Land­scape Growth Ad­dit­ive Man­u­fac­tur­ing (AM), also known as 3D print­ing, is one of the fast­est grow­ing areas at the EPO. From 2015-2018, its av­er­age an­nu­al growth rate was 36%, 10 times faster than...
    19 June 2020
    CMS Pat­ent Team are re­com­men­ded in the IAM Pat­ent 1000, 2020 dir­ect­ory
    CMS Pat­ent Team are re­com­men­ded in the IAM Pat­ent 1000, 2020 dir­ect­ory. Find out more.
    27 August 2020
    UK Su­preme Court up­holds UK Court's jur­is­dic­tion to settle FRAND li­cence...
    The much an­ti­cip­ated de­cision from the UK Su­preme Court in the joined ap­peals Un­wired Plan­et v Hua­wei and Con­vers­ant v ZTE was handed down yes­ter­day. A case pre­view, which in­cludes a full back­ground of...
    18 June 2020
    CMS named amongst Fin­an­cial Times Europe’s lead­ing pat­ent law firms
    CMS named amongst Fin­an­cial Times Europe’s lead­ing pat­ent law firms. Find out more.
    13 August 2020
    Sus­tain­able food pro­gress may close glob­al reg­u­lat­ory gap
    In­nov­a­tion in the sus­tain­able food sec­tor is for­ging ahead at a re­mark­able pace. Our cur­rent food sources ac­count for nearly one-third of glob­al GHG emis­sions while con­sumers are in­creas­ingly bet­ter edu­cated...