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Patent Protection for Software-Related Inventions in Europe and the USA

An intensive update on patent protection for software-related inventions covering all the major developments in European patent law in particular GUI inventions and 'mixed' inventions with both patentable and non-patentable subject matter.

Customised in-house training course

The content, presenters and format of this course are customised to your requirements.

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Course overview

Technology and software have influences across most business sectors in relation to leveraging growth, and this has important implications for IP and patent laws. This intensive one-day event will help you to understand the development strategies impacting software patents and update you on the major developments in European patent law, in particular GUI inventions and ‘mixed’ inventions with both patentable and non-patentable subject matter.

Under the guidance of our expert faculty, you will learn how recent US case law impacts software patents in the US and become proficient in exploiting the differences between the US and Europe regarding the scope of available patent protection. The course will provide a review of key tactics for US practice and give you an understanding of the latest US strategies in dealing with obviousness and the rise of indefiniteness and written description issues.

Having an experienced in-house lawyer on the faculty will ensure that you benefit from their practical knowledge on selecting and protecting software technologies and get invaluable insights into foreign filing strategies.

You will get to grips with how to avoid pitfalls in claim drafting using case studies and understand whether patent protection should be available for software-related and business-related inventions. A practical workshop session will provide ample opportunity for discussion with the expert faculty and consolidate your learning.

Who should attend?

  • Patent attorneys (both from private practice and industry)
  • In-house patent and general counsel
  • Chief information officers
  • Chief technology officers
  • Business development and technology professionals


Patent protection for software-related and business-related inventions in Europe

  • Review of European law relating to the protection of software-related and business-related inventions
  • Review of EPO Board of Appeal decisions including most recent decisions

Patent protection for software-related and business-related inventions in the United States

  • Update on recent Federal Circuit decisions impacting software
  • Patent practice in the wake of the US Supreme Court’s Alice decision
  • Detailed analysis of USPTO’s post- Alice guidelines
  • Case examples and claim techniques for US practice
  • Post-grant considerations for these technologies

Preparation of patent applications and prosecution of European applications for software-related and business-related inventions

  • Available claim formats and description requirements in Europe
  • Drafting applications to take account of European and US requirements
  • Filing strategies
  • Dealing with EPO objections under Article 52(1) EPC

Industry view: an in-house perspective on managing IP protection of software-related inventions

  • Selecting what software technologies to patent or to protect in other ways
  • Foreign filing strategies that balance budget and likelihood of success for software innovations
  • Challenges facing companies involved in managing software patents and responsible for software-related technologies

Practical workshop: questions, answers and discussion of specific examples

  • An interactive session designed to apply earlier discussion to practical situations
  • Examples and approaches for protecting software and computer-related innovations, taking into account the unique requirements in the US and Europe


Tim May (More...)

Timothy May is a partner in the Washington, DC office of Finnegan LLP. He has over 20 years experience in the field of US patent law, with significant experience counselling clients on software patent matters. Tim currently manages the patent portfolios for several European clients in various software, medical device and electrical and mechanical technologies. He regularly speaks on software patent issues. Prior to joining the firm, he served as a Patent Examiner at the US Patent and Trademark Office, where he examined applications involving digital and software technologies. From 2006 to 2011, Tim was located in the firm’s European office and continues to work with many European clients.

Alan Boyd (More...)

Alan Boyd is a partner at D Young & Co. Before he joined the patent law profession, he was a software engineer researcher and research assistant. Alan’s main areas of expertise include computer architectures, embedded systems, digital electronics, telecommunications and networks. He is a member of D Young & Co’s electronics, engineering & IT team, and has a great deal of experience in drafting and prosecuting patents for a range of clients. He is also an examiner for the legal paper in the European Qualifying Exams.

Andy Spurr (More...)

Andy Spurr is a patent attorney at Canon Europe, specialising in software related inventions with a particular focus on video encoding and standard essential patents. Before joining Canon, Andy spent 8 years at a private practice IP firm where he worked with numerous software start-ups, advising on how to best leverage their IP to create commercial value.


Customise & book

This course can be customised to meet your requirements, and delivered to your colleagues at your location or online. For more information, call us on +44 (0)20 7749 4730, email us at or contact us below:

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Continuing professional development

This course qualifies for 6 hours for your CPD records.
More about CPD

Training options

Public course dates

We can deliver and customise this course for any number of attendees, at your location or online. But if you have fewer colleagues, this course is running publically on:

  • 15-16 Sep 2022
  • 8 Dec 2022

Book now

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Previous customers include...

  • Agfa HealthCare NV
  • Aktiebolaget Electrolux
  • Awapatent AB
  • Bank of London and The Middle East plc
  • BP International Ltd
  • BSH Bosch und Siemens Hausgerate GmbH
  • Essity Hygiene and Health AB
  • Estonian Business and Innovation Agency
  • EUPATENT.PL Adam Pawlowski
  • Forensic Science Service Ltd
  • Garrigues IP
  • Glory Global Solutions
  • Harrison Goddard Foote
  • Keltie LLP
  • Nordic Patent Service
  • Patentanwalte Casati und Itze
  • Philips International B.V. - IP&S
  • Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
  • Pingu Consulting Ltd
  • Protector IP AS
  • Swisscom (Switzerland) AG
  • University of West Bohemia
  • Univerza v Ljubljani
  • Urquhart-Dykes & Lord LLP
  • Waterfront Partnership

My aim was to get an understanding of the difference of a "normal" and a software patent and I think the course covered that excellently.

Siim Kinnas, Intellectual Property Advisor, Estonian Business and Innovation Agency, Mar 22

Overall, this webinar was very good.

Ronney Wiklund, Senior Patent Attorney, Essity Hygiene and Health AB, Sep 20

I was completely satisfied with the course. The content was very well selected and the speakers were professional in their presentations.

Marijan Leban, Head of Intellectual Property Unit, Univerza v Ljubljani, Sep 19

Good course, good speakers, relevant content.

Romano Beitsma, European IP Attorney, Thermo Fisher Scientific (Bremen) GmbH, Sep 19

Very good!

Massimiliano SAVI, European and Italian Patent Attorney, Notarbartolo & Gervasi S.p.A., Mar 19

The speakers were all good and their materials were well presented.

Victoria Hufton, Senior Attorney, Stratagem IPM Limited, Mar 19

A good selection of experienced and responsive speakers – you can ask many questions and they have the ability and experience to respond. Enough content to keep you busy for some time when you come back.

Eugenio Souto, Patent attorney, IMEC vzw, Mar 19

Very good content. Splendid examples of how to address s101 objections. Good balance of male and female and private practice and industry attendees and speakers.

Cassandra Derham, Senior IP Attorney - Head of Technical IP, Amadeus SAS, Sep 18

I really appreciated the level of insight from experienced practitioners in the field. Alan and Tim are especially effective communicators. In an area which is technically and legally complex, I felt that they delivered clarity without oversimplifying the issues at stake. Highly recommended.

Sarah James, Patent Attorney, Unilever, Sep 18


Alan Boyd, Patent Attorney, D Young & Co LLP, Mar 18

Very good - I liked the practical angle.

Ulrikke Asbøll, Lawyer, Onsagers AS, Mar 18

Excellent presentations and examples. The speakers answered all of the attendees' questions.

Jan van den Hooven, Patent Attorney, NLO, Sep 17