The patent attorney profession combines law with a technical understanding of the basic science underlying new inventions. I work with a range of clients, from small start-ups to universities and large corporations, to secure patent protection in various jurisdictions worldwide for the inventions that they have created. I specialise in the chemistry and pharmaceutical fields, but the profession is open to anyone with an undergraduate degree in science, from mechanical engineering or electronics right through to biotechnology or plant science.
My job allows me to work in a business-orientated office environment whilst still having a strong connection to basic science. I particularly love the variety of work that the profession offers – no two days are the same! One day, I might be drafting a new patent application for a start-up biotech client, another I may have to formulate arguments to overcome objections raised by a patent Examiner against an application relating to polymer chemistry, and on a few occasions I have had the opportunity to assist a partner at a hearing before the European Patent Office. The biggest challenge to be aware of when joining the profession is that the qualifying exams are tough and require a lot of hard work; however, the rewards that the profession offers are more than worth it!