UK Court of Appeal dismisses DABUS appeal on AI as patent inventor but dissenting judgment leaves room for possible Supreme Court appeal

The latest round in the Thaler/DABUS patent applications story has been fought and lost by Dr Thaler in the UK Court of Appeal, although with one dissenting judgment. An appeal to the Supreme Court is possible but the subsequent announcement of the UK Government's National AI Strategy which will include a UK IPO consultation on the use of copyright and patents to protect AI, expected to be launched within the next few months may mean that the issues could be resolved via legislation instead. Where will Dr Thaler/DABUS go from here? Read more

“Why cannot our own creations also create?”: AI systems can be patent inventors in Australia

An artificial intelligence system is capable of being named as an “inventor” of patentable subject matter, according to the Federal Court’s recent decision in Thaler v Commissioner of Patents.[1] Subject to any appeal, this decision has salient implications for the ways in which inventorship, ownership, and inventiveness might be assessed in Australia in the future. … Read more

Change ahead? UKIPO publishes outcome of AI consultation and considers legislative reform

In September 2020 we reported that the UK Intellectual Property Office (‘UKIPO’) had launched a call for views on the relationship between artificial intelligence (‘AI’) and intellectual property rights. The outcome of that consultation has now been published. We summarise the key takeaways below. Key findings The majority of respondents agreed that: the law in … Read more

EU Action Plan on IP – the challenge ahead

Herbert Smith Freehills' European IP team have had a feature article on the EU's IP Action Plan published in the April edition of PLC Magazine – see EU Action Plan on IP – the challenge ahead here. The article looks at the current challenges for the EU in relation to IP, its key focus areas and plans for future regulation and legislation, including: • The Unified Patent Court (UPC) • Supplementary Protection Certificates (SPCs) • Compulsory licensing • Standard Essential Patents (SEPs) • AI and emerging technologies • Counterfeiting • Designs • Geographical Indications • Data • The Pharmaceutical Strategy for Europe Read more

Patent pending: the law on AI inventorship

Last year the UK High Court decided that an AI system cannot be named as inventor on a patent application within the meaning of the Patents Act 1977, simply because an AI is not a person – but with the UKIPO recently calling for views on AI inventorship, could a change in law be on … Read more

Views on an evolving automotive industry – standards and essential patents

In the latest edition of the HSF Automotive sector's series of articles looking at the evolution of the industry Andrew Moir, Ina vom Feld, Frédéric Chevallier, David Webb and Laura Adde of our London, Düsseldorf and Paris IP teams consider some of the key issues surrounding standard essential patents or SEPs for those in the sector. These include, in particular, how standards work, their role in the Automotive sector, how fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) licensing operates, and the risks of litigation and the varying approaches across Europe (in the UK, Germany and France in particular). Read more

The Trade and Cooperation Agreement and its impact on IP, Pharma and Medical Devices

The final Brexit agreement, the Trade and Cooperation Agreement was agreed between the UK and the EU on 24 December 2020. Within this agreement are provisions that set out the standards expected to be recognised (mutually) between the EU and the UK in relation to intellectual property (including SPCs and trade secrets). There are some provisions concerning pharmaceutical regulation and product standards, but overall there is a lack of mutual recognition, with the consequence that, for both pharmaceuticals and medical devices, there are now effectively two separate regimes for the EU and the UK. Read more