The patent attorney is the central point of contact for the legal protection of industrial property rights.
Patent attorneys advise clients on inventions, designs, trademarks, know-how as well as on how to protect software products and plant varieties. Patent attorneys represent clients before the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property, the European Patent Office and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). They work in support of any related application and examination processes before the pertinent authorities. Relying on their worldwide contacts with foreign consultants and other patent attorneys, patent attorneys coordinate application and examination processes abroad.
A patent attorney's main activities include:
- Filing applications for the protection of any type of proprietary industrial rights, domestically and internationally;
- Drafting expert opinions, oppositions, nullity claims, cancellation suits, objections and third-party submissions;
- Administering industrial property rights (monitoring of deadlines, payment of fees, etc.);
- Prosecuting infringements and defending against attacks on industrial property rights (in collaboration with legal specialists);
- Evaluating the industrial property rights of third parties and any collision risks;
- Researching prior art;
- Handling the official registration of transfers of industrial property rights;
- Advising on contract-related matters, specifically licensing agreements.