Intellectual Property


Intellectual Property, in all its forms, is of fundamental importance both to individuals and, in particular to business of all sizes from the smallest to the largest. Historically, IP expertise at the English Bar has been limited to a small number of Chambers all located in London.  Outside London, specialist knowledge of IP has typically been confined to a small number of individual practitioners who have offered such advice only as part of a wider commercial practice.

The work undertaken is concerned principally with the enforcement and exploitation of UK domestic and European Community intellectual property rights and their compatibility with UK and European Community competition law.

St Philips’ IP counsel undertake all areas of IP litigation in both the High Court and the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court as well as in mediations and arbitration proceedings. Specifically, our work includes:

PATENTS: The work in relation to Patents covers patent infringement, questions of entitlement and ownership and disputes in relation to validity, both in litigation before the civil courts and proceedings before the UK Patent Office. Our specialist IP practitioner is regularly involved in patent litigation embracing a number of major areas of technology, including electrical and mechanical engineering, computer software, information technology and consumer products

REGISTERED TRADE MARKS, PASSING OFF: Work in this area covers registered trade and service marks, passing off, domain name disputes (Nominet and ICANN procedures), sports and character merchandising, corporate sponsorship, franchising, product and packaging design, the Company Names Tribunal, unfair competition, and trade libel as well as counterfeiting and criminal remedies. We undertake opposition and revocation proceedings in the UK Trade Marks Registry at UKIPO and, in relation to Community Trade Marks, at the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (OHIM). In connection with the latter we can assist with and appear in appeals to the CJEU.

COPYRIGHT: The work in this area extends over the whole range of works entitled to copyright protection including literary, musical and artistic works, computer software and semiconductor topography, and also particular works such as photographs, films, television programmes, video games and internet websites.

DESIGN RIGHTS: We regularly advise upon and litigate disputes relating to rights in designs, both registered and unregistered and at both the UK national and European Community level.

DATABASE RIGHTS: Database right is the most recently created of the intellectual property rights and members of chambers advise and litigate in relation to the applicability of the EC Database Directive and the corresponding UK regulations across a wide range of commercial and industrial activity.

CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION AND TRADE SECRETS: We offer advice and advocacy services in relation to claims for breach of confidence and trade secrets including those involving misappropriation of trade secrets by former directors or employees. Typical actions involve subject matter ranging from secret industrial processes to customer/supplier databases, price lists and business plans. We are familiar with the other issues that arise in such situations (breach of duty of fidelity, breach of contractual restraints, breach of fiduciary duty) as well as pure trade secrets issues. In addition to commercial secrets, members of the group advise and act in cases involving personal confidential information, including the phone hacking litigation involving News International and the private investigator Glenn Mulcaire.

DATA PROTECTION & FREEDOM OF INFORMATION: The group undertakes work in this field, acting both for data controllers and data subjects.

COMMERCIAL LAW IN SPECIALIST AREAS: including information technology, computer contracts, franchising, and interrelated areas of European and UK competition and trade practices law, other contractual disputes with significant technical content and those relating to the creative industries.

PROFESSIONAL NEGLIGENCE IN SPECIALIST IP AREAS: We act and advise in relation to professional liability claims involving IP rights against both lawyers and other IP professionals including Patent and Trade Mark Agents St Philip’s IP group also presents seminars on current IP issues for small and large groups both in our own facilities and at client’s premises. We are always willing to produce seminars to meet a client’s particular

Our Intellectual Property Barristers