Friday, 16 September 2011

US Patent Law - Biggest Shift In A Generation

The most comprehensive reform of US patent law for a generation is due to take effect today, when the America Invents Act is made law. The changes bring US law into greater conformity with the laws in the rest of the industrialised world, according to Withers & Rogers.

Among the key legislative changes, US patent law is adopting the ‘first-inventor-to-file’ rule, which applies in Europe. Until now, any dispute about the ownership of a patent for an invention was decided in favour of the person able to prove that he or she came up with the invention first. 

This approach led to costly litigation to establish the dates of the invention. Instead, US law will mirror the legal position in Europe, with the right of ownership going to the first person to file a patent application. This change will take effect in 18 months’ time.

Top 100 Battle for European Business Awards

More than 100 companies have been awarded a ‘Ruban d’Honneur’ prize in the penultimate stage of the European Business Awards, sponsored by HSBC.

Successful companies include Software AG, Harrods, THY DO & CO A.Ş, Repsol, Solairedirect, Companeo, Sheffield Forgemasters, Eurocash and Amadeus IT Group, representing nations across Europe. 

Some of Europe’s most dynamic businesses have survived intensive and rigorous judging to make it onto the finalists list. With victory in their sights they now have a chance to be crowned as one of eleven overall category winners in the Awards.

Adrian Tripp, Chief Executive of the European Business Awards, said: “Receiving a Ruban d’Honneur is a major success. It promotes the fact that you’re up there with the best businesses across the European community. This year has been tough on the judging panel as we’re seeing businesses emerge from economic difficulties and come out fighting and delivering some great entries. The mood is confident, ebullient and highly competitive.”