Portrait of Tom Scourfield

Tom Scourfield

Partner
Co-Head of the international IP Group and UK Chair of the Consumer Products Sector Group

CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
Cannon Place
78 Cannon Street
London
EC4N 6AF
United Kingdom
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang Pośniak i Bejm sp.k.
Warsaw Financial Centre
ul. Emilii Plater 53
00-113 Warsaw
Poland
Languages English

Tom Scourfield is Co-Head of the international IP Group at CMS and UK Chair of the Consumer Products Sector Group. He is a Solicitor Advocate (England and Wales), with an Irish solicitors qualification.

Tom advises businesses on their commercial IP assets. This includes helping find the best strategy for the creation, identification, registration and capture of those assets, to their realisation through commercial agreements and licensing, and their protection and enforcement through litigation and other dispute resolution. He also advises on related fields to IP, including advertising and marketing, consumer law, media, data protection, cyber breaches and IT issues.

As a Solicitor Advocate, Tom is particularly well known for his IP enforcement work and has helped clients achieve their strategic goals in all forms of IP dispute resolution. He has led cases at all levels of UK courts (civil and criminal) as well as OHIM, the CJEU and beyond in multi-jurisdictional disputes. His practice focuses on those industry sectors where IP assets are most critical to commercial success, including Consumer Products, TMC, Life Sciences & Healthcare and Energy, among others.

Post-Brexit, Tom will continue to hold representation and audience rights before the EUIPO and the Court of Justice of the European Union. Tom is English and Irish qualified, and he will operate his EU trade mark and design practice from our Polish office.

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"He is one of the most formidable lawyers I have ever come across. His expertise is incredible, and he manages his team extremely well, so there is always prompt comeback with the requisite level of detail."

Chambers, 2018

“The London-based team also includes co-head of the firm's international IP group, Tom Scourfield, who is highlighted as being “thorough and practical, with a great sense of humour”

Legal 500, 2018

"Scourfield is a renowned enforcement and litigation maestro who moves into the WTR 1000 gold tier this year”

World Trademark Review, 2019

"great leadership of matters, fantastic availability and very good understanding of the client's business culture and how that drives decisions."

Chambers

"CMS’ team is ‘managed very well’ by the ‘personable, practical and hands-on’ Tom Scourfield"

Legal 500

"pragmatic and business-minded, a preferred choice for many of the world’s biggest brand owners"

WTR 1000

Relevant experience

  • A major broadcaster on enforcement strategy for its exclusive content.
  • The manufacturer and license holder of a celebrity fragrance brand.
  • Pharmaceutical patent infringement in relation to SEROXAT, CITALOPRAM and other compounds.
  • A multi-jurisdictional patent infringement dispute in the oil and gas sector.
  • Datacard v Eagle Technologies (patent and trade mark infringement and invalidity).
  • Blackberry on its European anti-counterfeiting program.
  • United Airlines on its successful trade mark infringement against United Airways.
  • Intel on the INTELMARK case, the leading European case on trade mark dilution.
  • Nestlé in relation to the Kit Kat shape trade mark, the leading case on acquired distinctiveness.
  • A leading insurer on its cyber breach insurance product and support to all of its insured clients.
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Memberships & Roles

  • Associate Member: Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys
  • British Brands Group
  • Marques: Famous and Well Known Marks Committee
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Publications

  • Commentary on Community Trade Mark Regulation: A Commentary (Kooperationswerke Beck - Hart - Nomos) published 2015
  • Commentary on Community Design Regulation: Kooperationswerke Beck - Hart - Nomos) published 2015
  • Trade Marks Handbook (Sweet & Maxwell)
  • European Patents Handbook (Sweet & Maxwell)
  • Lexis PSL – various practice notes on IP
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Education

  • 2005 – Solicitor Higher Rights of Audience, The College of Law, London
  • 2003 - Intellectual Property Diploma, University of Bristol
  • 1998 - LLB Hons law with American law, University of Nottingham/University of Texas at Austin
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Feed

13/09/2022
Open secrets? Guard­ing value in the in­tan­gible eco­nomy
Some leaks can’t be fixed “Con­fid­en­tial in­form­a­tion is like an ice cube... give it to the party who has no re­fri­ger­at­or or will not agree to keep it in one, and by the time of the tri­al you have just a pool of wa­ter.” This, from the so-called Spycatch­er case (1987), ap­plies well to cor­por­ate as­sets: fail to store them cor­rectly and all you might have left is an ex­pens­ive mess.The con­sequences of even a minor ex­pos­ure of a trade secret can be huge. As this re­port re­veals, the pro­tec­tion of trade secrets is rightly re­cog­nised by most seni­or ex­ec­ut­ives as a pri­or­ity is­sue. But the re­search also re­veals gaps that leave com­pan­ies un­ne­ces­sar­ily ex­posed to risks. The top named threats – cy­ber­se­cur­ity at­tacks and em­ploy­ee leaks – res­on­ate with what we see im­pact­ing our cli­ents. In­creased home and re­mote work­ing is strain­ing se­cur­ity meas­ures and em­ploy­ee loy­alty. Ad­ded to this, an ‘in­nov­ate or die’ at­ti­tude in highly-com­pet­it­ive sec­tors can mo­tiv­ate new join­ers to ar­rive with ques­tion­able ma­ter­i­al from their pre­vi­ous em­ploy­er, or worse: out­right theft between com­pet­it­ors. But while it is easy to fo­cus on the lurk­ing threats from weakened cy­ber se­cur­ity and dis­gruntled em­ploy­ees – and they are im­port­ant – there are more routine ac­tions a com­pany can take to safe­guard its secrets than just up­dat­ing its IT sys­tems or the em­ploy­ee hand­book. Com­monly, those who most need our help already have a trade secrets policy but have not prop­erly im­ple­men­ted it in re­la­tion to the secret in ques­tion. Or the policy has not been up­dated to re­flect the in­tan­gible as­sets the busi­ness now owns. Or pro­tec­tion was taken for gran­ted.With trade secrets – which for many busi­nesses are stra­tegic­ally more im­port­ant than a pub­lic pat­ent port­fo­lio – it is al­ways cost­li­er and messi­er to find solu­tions after a theft or a leak. Identi­fy­ing the trade secrets and the threats posed to them, com­bined with rig­or­ous in­tern­al pro­cesses and well-draf­ted con­tracts, can help pre­vent such prob­lems from hap­pen­ing. Harder, but just as ne­ces­sary, is en­ga­ging hearts and minds in cor­por­ate cul­ture, to know why trade secrets are im­port­ant, why we are all are re­spons­ible for pro­tect­ing them, and what may hap­pen if we do not (to both the com­pany and the in­di­vidu­al). In our ex­per­i­ence, the busi­nesses with the strongest de­fences have not only thought stra­tegic­ally about their in­tan­gible as­sets and how best to pro­tect them but are also pre­pared for the worst. The trick to avoid­ing an as­set be­com­ing a crisis is to be wise be­fore the event.
13/06/2022
Up­dated CMS Ex­pert Guide to Trade Secrets
From pat­ents to pro­grammes, designs to data, your most valu­able busi­ness as­sets can be the things you can’t put un­der lock and key. But what leg­al re­course do you have to pro­tect these in­tan­gible as­sets...
07/06/2022
Trade secret laws and reg­u­la­tions in the UK
Gen­er­al 1. Has the Dir­ect­ive (EU) 2016/943 of the European Par­lia­ment and of the Coun­cil of 8 June 2016 on the pro­tec­tion of un­dis­closed know-how and busi­ness in­form­a­tion (trade secrets) against their...
Comparable
16/02/2022
No use cry­ing: an­oth­er Boo­hoo ad banned for ob­jec­ti­fy­ing and sexu­al­ising...
In Novem­ber 2021, Boo­hoo.com’s web­site fea­tured a product list­ing for a t-shirt. Two im­ages in the ad showed a mod­el wear­ing the t-shirt with only thong-style bikini bot­toms and train­ers. One was a...
10/01/2022
Tech­no­logy: a uni­fy­ing force
Com­pan­ies of­ten talk about the scourge of the silo, the farm­ing stor­age meta­phor that has come to rep­res­ent teams or de­part­ments that op­er­ate on their own. However, with tech­no­logy trans­form­ing vir­tu­ally every in­dustry on the plan­et, col­lab­or­a­tion across sec­tors has be­come es­sen­tial. Ad­di­tion­ally, the COV­ID-19 crisis has high­lighted the cru­cial role tech­no­logy, spe­cific­ally con­nectiv­ity, plays as the back­bone of our busi­ness world across all sec­tors, and once COV­ID-19 is brought un­der con­trol or even erad­ic­ated, it will prove es­sen­tial for so­cial and eco­nom­ic prosper­ity. For­ging links in di­git­al in­fra­struc­ture pro­jects Jonath­an Dames, a part­ner at CMS in Lon­don, says that his team’s prac­tice tra­di­tion­ally centred on so­cial and eco­nom­ic in­fra­struc­ture and en­ergy fin­ance, but is in­creas­ingly shift­ing to­wards di­git­al in­fra­struc­ture pro­jects, in­clud­ing fibre net­works and data centres.He says that these kinds of pro­jects re­quire close col­lab­or­a­tion between tra­di­tion­al pro­jects and pro­ject fin­ance law­yers and their col­leagues in Tech­no­logy, Me­dia & Com­mu­nic­a­tions (TMC), “We al­ways had cros­sov­er, and en­joyed great col­lab­or­a­tion with both the In­fra­struc­ture & Pro­jects and En­ergy Sec­tor Groups, for ex­ample, but now we are work­ing with the TMC Sec­tor Group much more closely be­cause we are fa­cing reg­u­lat­ory is­sues and re­gimes that we have nev­er faced be­fore such as Code Powers, the re­quire­ments of the Com­mu­nic­a­tions Act and re­lated le­gis­la­tion.“CMS has ex­tens­ive in­fra­struc­ture, en­ergy and tele­coms ex­pert­ise and is able to bring it all to­geth­er to cre­ate the skill set re­quired to de­liv­er long-term pro­ject fin­an­cing to tech­no­logy-based in­fra­struc­ture pro­jects.”Ad­di­tion­ally, the fund­ing of di­git­al in­fra­struc­ture pro­jects, such as the 10,000km El­laLink sub­sea cable between Brazil and Por­tugal, de­mands more com­plic­ated fin­an­cing struc­tures to cov­er the re­lated risks and cre­ate the op­tim­al cap­it­al stack to get the best all-in pri­cing. This has in­volved us­ing mezzan­ine fin­ance and vendor fin­an­cing for con­struc­tion, with a view to at­tract­ing cheap­er op­er­a­tion­al peri­od fin­an­cing in the me­di­um term. A sub­sea cable, cross­ing in­ter­na­tion­al wa­ters and land­ing in mul­tiple leg­al jur­is­dic­tions, is not, un­der­stand­ably, ex­posed to the same po­ten­tial threats and per­ils as a hos­pit­al or a con­ven­tion­al power sta­tion or a wind farm on a single site. So, not all the usu­al rules, mar­ket norms, leg­al con­structs and stand­ard mit­ig­ants ne­ces­sar­ily fit for a fin­an­cing of this type of as­set. Rise of the ma­chines The CMS In­tel­lec­tu­al Prop­erty (IP) Group has un­sur­pris­ingly been at the fore­front of tech­no­lo­gic­al in­nov­a­tion, sup­port­ing cli­ents in the iden­ti­fic­a­tion, pro­tec­tion and com­mer­cial­isa­tion of their IP as­sets. Tom Scourfield, Co-Head of the group, is based in Lon­don and Warsaw, two cit­ies well-known for their tech­no­logy in­cub­a­tion. He ob­serves, “We are not only see­ing an in­crease in the use of tech­no­logy in col­lab­or­a­tion, but much more fre­quently, col­lab­or­a­tion with tech­no­logy it­self.”Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence (AI) is a grow­ing area of fo­cus. Pat­ent ap­plic­a­tions for AI tech­no­lo­gies have in­creased by 170,000 since 2013, ac­cord­ing to a re­cent re­port by the World In­tel­lec­tu­al Prop­erty Of­fice (WIPO). In the field of AI pat­ents, there is cur­rently a fas­cin­at­ing de­bate around the ques­tion of pat­entab­il­ity of in­ven­tions cre­ated by AI ma­chines them­selves. Ac­cord­ing to Tom Scourfield, “Bey­ond pat­ents, we are also see­ing an in­creased use of AI in de­tect­ing and mon­it­or­ing coun­ter­feits and oth­er on­line brand harms. AI is also be­ing used to sup­ple­ment and sup­port the ana­lys­is of sim­il­ar­it­ies between com­pet­ing brands, wheth­er in terms of brand clear­ance or in­fringe­ment scen­ari­os.”Whatever de­vel­op­ments AI and oth­er in­nov­a­tion may bring, he thinks that one thing is cer­tain, “As IP law­yers, we al­ways have to be for­ward-think­ing, look­ing to pro­tect and se­cure com­pet­it­ive ad­vant­ages for our cli­ents in mar­kets and op­por­tun­it­ies that are not even fully es­tab­lished yet.” Pi­on­eer­ing new products Lon­don Funds part­ner Chris­toph­er Luck sees a real ap­pet­ite for new types of as­sets from the funds com­munity. He says that di­git­al tech­no­lo­gies are trans­form­ing the back-of­fices of as­set man­agers and are im­prov­ing the cus­tom­er ex­per­i­ence. Fund man­agers are be­com­ing bet­ter at stor­ing and har­ness­ing data, us­ing block­chain tech­no­lo­gies and plat­forms to make on­board­ing of know your cus­tom­er (KYC) in­form­a­tion and data pro­tec­tion a more stream­lined pro­cess. The use of smart con­tracts is also be­com­ing more pre­val­ent. Chris­toph­er Luck notes that the ad­vent of token­isa­tion, the pro­cess of con­vert­ing real as­sets in­to di­git­al rep­res­ent­a­tions (tokens) on a block­chain, has opened up the in­vest­ment mar­ket to a broad­er range of in­sti­tu­tion­al and re­tail in­vestors. “By demo­crat­ising or cre­at­ing more op­por­tun­it­ies for in­vestors, this is provid­ing ad­di­tion­al li­quid­ity in­to a num­ber of sec­tors, most not­ably real es­tate.” He says, “We are see­ing tokens at their most ad­vanced in the United States and Asia, and grow­ing in the UK and Europe.”  Un­der­stand­ing new en­vir­on­ments  In oth­er more tra­di­tion­al sec­tors, law­yers are in­creas­ingly be­ing ex­pec­ted to provide ad­vice on how to deal with the chal­lenges and op­por­tun­it­ies that tech­no­logy provides.Mark Ziek­man, Co-Head of the CMS Con­sumer Products Group, says, “In the con­sumer goods sec­tor, block­chain is mak­ing an im­pact, provid­ing the sup­ply chain and cus­tom­ers with a great­er de­gree of con­fid­ence in the proven­ance of a product and wheth­er it meets key sus­tain­ab­il­ity cri­ter­ia.”Cus­tom­ers, par­tic­u­larly mil­len­ni­als, are in­creas­ingly de­mand­ing in­form­a­tion around trace­ab­il­ity and audit­ab­il­ity to have con­fid­ence in FM­CG com­pan­ies, lo­gist­ics com­pan­ies and re­tail­ers.Fur­ther­more, Mark Ziek­man be­lieves that tech­no­logy in gen­er­al has played a pivotal role in ad­dress­ing wide­spread busi­ness dis­rup­tion caused by COV­ID-19, en­abling com­pan­ies to trans­form their busi­ness mod­els. Good ex­amples are res­taur­ants which al­most in­stant­an­eously changed their busi­ness mod­el to provide takeaways and food de­liv­er­ies. Shops shif­ted their fo­cus to selling on­line. These changes will not dis­ap­pear in the af­ter­math of the COV­ID-19 pan­dem­ic. Shift­ing reg­u­lat­ory land­scapes Reg­u­lat­ors con­tin­ue to face the on­go­ing chal­lenge of keep­ing pace with in­nov­a­tion and the new mar­ket dy­nam­ics it cre­ates. ESG factors have come to the fore in the minds of reg­u­lat­ors as well and this think­ing is only go­ing to in­tensi­fy. Cristina Reich­mann, a Bucharest based part­ner in the CMS Bank­ing & Fin­ance Group, says that reg­u­lat­ors are al­ways hav­ing to re­spond to new eco­nom­ic mod­els and pub­lic sen­ti­ments. She has seen fast dis­rup­tion in the bank­ing sec­tor CEE, “Ro­mania, for ex­ample, has a his­tory of in­nov­a­tion, pre­vi­ously emer­ging as a ma­jor in­ter­na­tion­al out­sourcing hub and then be­com­ing a fintech centre with a num­ber of uni­corns.” She points to agile bank­ing and fintech, which are provid­ing great­er ac­cess and a broad­er suite of ser­vices to cus­tom­ers, and with this comes reg­u­lat­ory chal­lenges. She says, “There are a lot of com­pli­ance as­pects to be met and solved.”
21/09/2021
“Eco-friendly” claims – fi­nal UK guid­ance launched: com­pli­ance by the New...
This week the UK’s Con­sumer law reg­u­lat­or, the Com­pet­i­tion and Mar­kets Au­thor­ity (the “CMA”), pub­lished its fi­nal guid­ance for busi­nesses on “green claims”, to­geth­er with a Green Claims Code...
06/09/2021
CMS Ex­pert Guide to trans­fer­ring IP rights
In re­cent years, IP rights have be­come an in­creas­ingly im­port­ant as­set not only for R&D and tech­no­logy based com­pan­ies but also for con­sumer product man­u­fac­tur­ers and life sci­ences com­pan­ies, for ex­ample...
Comparable
01/06/2021
CMS In­tel­lec­tu­al Prop­erty Glob­al Bro­chure
The pan­dem­ic that will define 2020 has put many types of in­tel­lec­tu­al prop­erty in the spot­light – par­tic­u­larly, of course, in life sci­ences. Who will de­vel­op an ef­fect­ive vac­cine or vac­cines for Cov­id-19...
09/06/2021
Open Secrets? Guard­ing value in the in­tan­gible eco­nomy
Across mul­tiple in­dus­tries, busi­nesses are de­riv­ing an ever great­er pro­por­tion of their value from as­sets pro­tec­ted not by pat­ent or copy­right – but by secrecy. And from cus­tom­er data to soft­ware al­gorithms...
30/04/2021
“Pro­tect­ing young and vul­ner­able people” - ASA pub­lishes its 2020 An­nu­al...
As the ASA and CAP this week re­leased their An­nu­al Re­port for 2020, we round up the key points from a uniquely chal­len­ging year. Cov­id chal­lenges Un­sur­pris­ingly, and des­pite the fo­cus of the re­port be­ing...
06/04/2021
Court of Ap­peal sticks with CJEU jur­is­pru­dence on com­mu­nic­a­tion to the...
In its re­cent de­cision in Tun­eIn Inc v Warner Mu­sic UK Lim­ited and Sony Mu­sic En­ter­tain­ment UK Lim­ited [2021] EW­CA Civ 441, the Court of Ap­peal has re­jec­ted ar­gu­ments that the UK should de­part from the...
19/03/2021
Los­ing friends while in­flu­en­cing people: ASA warns In­sta in­flu­en­cers over...
Fol­low­ing a series of up­held ad­ju­dic­a­tions in re­cent months in re­la­tion to in­flu­en­cer ad­vert­ising posts that were not ob­vi­ously iden­ti­fi­able as ad­vert­ising, the ASA has pub­lished the res­ults of a three-week...