Intellectual property – the forgotten value
The forgotten value in a lot of organisations is often its intellectual property. This valuable asset can be protected and exploited to bring substantial financial benefit and additional income to any private or public sector entity. Being a technically complex area, seeking expert professional advice at an early stage can help you maximise those returns, protecting your position and saving future cost if things go wrong. Our specialist team is able to offer our clients expert intellectual property legal advice.
It is key to know what intellectual property you have and to develop intelligent strategies to capture, assess, protect and exploit it to maximise its benefit. This may include carrying out IP audits, registration of certain rights such as patents, trade marks and registered designs; putting proper contractual arrangements in place with staff, consultants and suppliers; and using suitable contractual models which will protect you when exploiting IP. You also need to take steps to enforce your intellectual property in relation to any infringement or its value will be reduced or even lost. With all these, our IP lawyers can provide relevant and beneficial intellectual property legal advice to add maximum value to your organisation.
Many of our lawyers have first hand experience of working in-house “at the coal face” in a variety of sectors, as well as substantial experience advising a wide range of clients as private practice lawyers. Members of our team also regularly provide training sessions and write articles on IP issues.
This combination of detailed technical knowledge, coupled with first hand commercial experience, gives us an effective and pragmatic approach and brings us repeat and retainer instructions from a variety of impressive clients.
Who we work with
We regularly advises a broad range of public and private sector organisations, many in the healthcare arena, in relation to intellectual property matters. We advise large sections of the NHS; many nationally renowned and substantial charities, academic institutions and social enterprise clients; research and development organisations; software houses; design agencies; and pharmaceutical, life sciences and medical technology companies.
Key services and issues
- IP reviews, audits and due diligence
- IP policy and strategy formulation
- Advice on ownership issues
- IP protection, including
- trade mark registration
- patent advice
- design registration and design right advice
- copyright and database protection
- Collaborations for research and development – advice, joint venture structuring and contractual arrangements
- Confidentiality agreements
- Horizon 20/20 and Innovate UK funded projects
- Exploitation of IP including licensing, assignment and sales, joint exploitation and sharing of IP and confidential information
- Training on IP for client teams
- IP issues in employment, consultancy and directors’ service agreements
- IP dispute resolution including trade mark and patent enforcement, passing off, design and copyright infringement
- Clinical trials and medical research agreements
- Pharma and life sciences IP issues
- Medical device innovation and protection
- Advice on filming, performance, publishing and image rights issues, including media rights
- IP issues in an IT context including software development and licensing
- Protection of IP in online content, including website notices and disclaimers
- Advising on licences from Collecting Societies including PPL, PRS, MCPS and CLA and
- Freedom to operate opinions and searches.
- TrusTECH – we are retained legal advisors to TrusTECH the NHS in-house IP managers for the North West of England – advising on IP protection and exploitation matters;
- Carrying out a comprehensive review of the IP owned and licensed by a manufacturer of a medicine management system;
- Royal College of Radiologists – we regularly advise third sector clients on knowledge, dissemination and publishing matters, including recent work for the Royal College of Radiologists on the international publishing of their guidelines in various formats;
- Zoological Society of London – we advised London Zoo on a trade mark and passing off dispute with another zoo over copycat branding issues;
- Advising a medical device manufacturer on the protection of its device and the licensing and exploitation of its IP;
- Advising a Foundation Trust on a copyright infringement matter, including advice on whether the terms of its copyright licence had been breached;
- Advising Trusts and other organisations on their arrangements with Collecting Societies such as the PPL and PRS;
- Establishing C&CM Consulting Limited as a joint venture between French shareholders to exploit a patent, including drafting and negotiating an exclusive patent licence and manufacturing agreement for the manufacture of patent products in the UK;
- Pharmaceutical consortium – advising a consortium looking to develop and exploit a new test for a disease, including advising on patenting strategies, assignment and licensing documentation, contracts for the evaluation and testing of the effectiveness of the test kit, working with US counterparts to export the kits and advising on royalty arrangements for third parties;
- Pharmaceuticals manufacturer – carrying out extensive IP due diligence on a portfolio of IP being acquired by the manufacturer including freedom to operate advice and strategic IP portfolio management advice.
- Acting for the North of England Cardiovascular network in establishing a joint venture with a private sector organisation to develop and exploit bespoke software, enabling more effective stroke patient data collection.
Related work areas
Case studiesView all
We advised Arthritis Research UK on its national rebranding. We provided a legal project plan and then handled all stages of implementation, including obtaining consents from the Charity Commission and OSCR, passing the resolutions of the charity and its subsidiaries and licensing of the new name to its trading company.View Case study
Intellectual Property is the term that is used to describe things that will be owned by someone but are not physical in nature.
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Organisations rightly devote significant time and resources towards ensuring their web presence reflects their values and the message they wish to convey to the outside world. Even those that do not engage in e-commerce are expected to have a website – their shop-window in the electronic world – and will take steps to ensure that clients and prospective clients searching the internet will arrive at their own website rather than that of a competitor.
Doctors in private practice and private healthcare operators are often innovators, developing software, equipment and treatments, and building a ‘brand.’ Using these more widely, both in British healthcare and further afield, could bring benefits to patients - and private practitioners are often keen to help this happen. However, they need to consider what happens to their intellectual property in their innovations. IP is a valuable asset – as is being increasingly realised by the NHS – and needs protecting.
It is as true for a business offering healthcare services as it is for any High Street seller of goods that the business’ brand and the goodwill associated with it are valuable assets that are worthy of protection.
Welcome to the latest edition of Hempsons' Dental Newsbrief.
Technology and innovation is at the forefront of current medical practice, with new software, apps and websites being released regularly. This article is designed to offer an overview of some of the potential mistakes you could make if you are considering the development of your own health technology from the intellectual property (IP) perspective.
There have long been restrictions on owners of certain types of IP making “unjustified threats” of infringement action to third parties. Coupled with the fact that the maker of an unjustified threat (which could include a law firm on behalf of its client!) can face legal action, and a claim for damages; this has always been an area which requires careful consideration.
We all know the key role that your brand plays in building awareness of your practice with your patients, but how do you maximise and protect its value?
We live in an increasingly digital age where innovation and new technologies are at the forefront of everything we do, with new apps, websites and content being released daily, helping practices to stay in touch with patients.
We live in an increasingly digital age where technology and innovation are at the forefront of everything we do, with new apps, websites and content being released and published daily, helping us stay in touch with people all around the world.