posted on November 15, 2020
It is important to understand intellectual property rights as a management tool and as a strategic means to secure one's own business success. In today's industrial environment, sustainable and successful work with new topics is only possible with strategic patent protection, explains patent law expert Dr. Hannes Burger.
What is the purpose of patents?
Patents have two objectives. One is to generate exclusivity for one’s own developments. The other is to create a state of the art. Essentially, this means ensuring that a certain combination of features, i. e. a certain invention, is available to the public and that no one else can protect it.
Which patent issues are you faced with the most?
Basically, we serve industrial customers throughout the entire DACH region. In long-standing client relationships, we provide the best possible support in all relevant IP-related issues; from research, to global filing at offices and contract issues. Of course, we also defend the property rights of our clients in lawsuits or enforce them in infringement proceedings or in legal enforcement with administrative authorities, e. g. in China.
How long does a patent protection last?
It depends on how long the maintenance fees are paid for. In the EU, fees are payable annually after an initial period. A patent can be maintained for a maximum of 20 years.
When do you have to apply for a patent for an invention?
If you want to protect something, it is imperative that an application is made before the invention is published. This means you can destroy a patent by your own actions even before filing. Therefore, confidentiality agreements should be concluded with any third parties involved. The quality of the prepared application is also an essential factor. Overlaps with existing patents can be avoided by targeted searches.
How does your firm work in patent matters?
We specialize in being a central partner for our industrial customers in patent matters. This means that ideally we support the entire innovation and product cycle and thus help and support the development of a strategic patent portfolio. The most important secret of success in patent law is to proceed continuously and persistently. Here, too, the crisis carries a certain risk, because things are being economized that are needed later. Digitization is also a strong feature of us. In other words, we develop software products with partners that we make available to our clients, making a fully digital information flow possible and keeping relevant information for our clients available and up-to-date, including information about their competitors.