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Patents

Defend.
Enforce.
Protect.

Your innovations create a competitive edge. We can help you defend it. We write patent applications that protect the economic value of your technical achievements. Our portfolio management offers control and an overview, to enable you to leverage the value of your patents. In the event of a patent infringement, we make sure your rights are enforced or defended against attacks by third parties.

Application

From an idea to a highly effective patent

A patent is designed to secure the economic advantages resulting from a technical innovation. This provides you with an effective prohibitive right when it comes to your relevant target group, i.e. relevant competitors.

New patent applications

Patent claims must contain sufficient features to distinguish them from state-of-the-art technology while at the same time possessing as few features as possible to prevent competitors from circumventing them. The aim is to claim the technically necessary core that leads to the economic advantage.

We do this by using our methodical structure-building process where we break down the technical invention into its components and reconstruct it at a higher level of abstraction. Our firm has many years of experience in this approach and its implementation. It involves intensive communication with our clients.

We modularize the original idea, prioritize the technical features according to their economic value and generate a broadly defined main claim that is distinct from the known state-of-the-art. In the dependent claims we create positions of withdrawal should any unexpected stat-of-the-art arise during the granting procedure. In this way, your company receives a protective right with a broad and flexible scope of protection.

Subsequent application for foreign patents

We work across borders and support internationally active clients in Germany and from countries outside Europe, in particular the USA, Japan, India and China.

We support foreign clients’ extension of foreign patents to Germany and Europe. When drafting a subsequent application and in the granting process, we make sure that the possibilities of German and European law are fully exploited. We point out relevant differences to foreign patent law at an early stage. Due to our many years of experience in the extension of patents in both directions, we are familiar with the typical challenges involved.

Portfolio management

Your property rights – transparent and operational

We highlight the value of your patents and the protected technologies for your company. We also simplify the handling of all procedures for you. Our business processes are adaptable and scalable to suit your needs.

Maintaining Patents

Fees must be paid regularly to ensure that the patent property rights continue to apply. In most cases, the patent office indicates neither when payments are due nor the amount to be paid. We inform you well in advance concerning all current deadlines and the necessary measures.

Evaluating patents

Together with you, we evaluate the relevance of your existing property rights so that you can decide where it is worth maintaining them.

Monitoring competitors

We monitor the relevant technical fields for our clients to detect competitor applications and foreign patents that could affect their business. This means you can keep an eye on the activities of your competitors and on your own options for maneuvering. If action becomes necessary, you are able to react in good time.

Employee inventions

German law grants employees extensive rights regarding their inventions in a company.

We work with you to develop suitable management and remuneration systems to implement the legal requirements and promote the innovation process.

License agreements

Patents can be exploited by granting licenses. We support you in the negotiation of the granting or acquisition of a license. For this purpose we create future-oriented contracts that take your economic interests into account.

Due diligence

Patents are a relevant factor in the purchase price where companies are sold or merged. We support clients in assessing the value and effectiveness of the patent portfolio of the company being sold.

Enforcing patents

We secure your market – in business, at exhibitions and on the Internet

We support you in enforcing your patents – sometimes quickly and forcefully, sometimes quietly behind the scenes or cost-sensitive – depending on what the situation requires.

Securing evidence

Evidence is essential when enforcing a patent. Especially when the competitor’s product doesn’t reveal the infringement at first sight. We help you with investigating the evidence. This includes research in Internet archives, file hosters, blogs, technical forums and on social media sites. Due to our many years of experience we often find information that is crucial for enforcing our client’s rights. We can organize test purchases, exhibition visits and inspection procedures for you and in the case of actual suspicion of infringement, even on the site of a competitor.

Convincing arguments

To see whether our arguments are convincing we test them internally, in advance. As a family business we are used to discussing issues on an equal footing and playing the role of the devil’s advocate. Early on we anticipate an opponent’s potential arguments and raise them openly to detect any weak points.

Out-of-court negotiations

Conflicts can be resolved without court proceedings. Together with you, we develop the right strategy for the negotiation to find a solution that takes your interests into account.

Validity of the patent

One of an infringer’s first defense arguments is the claim that the patent is not new or inventive compared to the state-of-the-art, i.e. that the patent was unjustly granted. On the basis of our many years of practical experience from grant and legal status proceedings in various administrative bodies and courts, we are in a position to realistically assess whether the property rights will survive the legal status proceedings.

Defending against allegations of infringement

Avert damage and maintain freedom to act!

Have you been accused of infringing on a patent or a utility model? We provide you with a quick overview of the situation and show you your defense options.

Evaluating risk

If you are under pressure, it is crucial to calm the situation down. On the basis of a realistic risk assessment we point out your options for actions you can take. We explain possible consequences of damage and the cost-benefit ratio of the available response options.

Minimizing the consequences of damage

Being subject to patent infringement proceedings can have significant consequences for a company. We support you in minimizing the risk of damage. In doing so, we act quietly and in a face-saving way so that your business and your customers are protected.

Developing workarounds

Sometimes a small product modification is enough to circumvent a patent. Together with you we design technical variants that keep your product attractive and eliminate the risk of infringement.

Infobox

We look forward to receiving your inquiries regarding the filing, protection, enforcement and defence of your patents. You can reach us by phone at +49 (0) 821 568 99-0 or by e-mail at info@ernicke.com . You are welcome to contact us!

Moritz Ernicke

Graduate Engineer (Dipl.-Ing., TU Munich)
German Patent Attorney
European Patent Attorney

info@ernicke.com

Maximilian Ernicke

Attorney-at-law
Wirtschaftsjurist (Univ. Bayreuth)
Master of Laws (LL.M.)
Master of Mediation (M.M.)
Maître en Droit

info@ernicke.com

Johannes Ernicke

German Patent AttorneyM.Sc.
Mechanical Engineering (KIT)
Ingénieur diplômé (INSA Lyon)
Master of Business Administration (CDI)

info@ernicke.com