The Impact of Patent Construction - How to Prove Infringement and Validity

This seminar provides a comprehensive overview of the principles of patent claim interpretation in the USA, UK and Germany.

17 May 2019

GBP 699
EUR 979
USD 1,090

Book now

Course Overview

This seminar provides a comprehensive overview of the principles of patent claim interpretation in the USA, UK and Germany, a comparison and explanation of the varying approaches for determining when a patent claim that does not literally describe an accused system is nonetheless infringed. As well as exemplary fact scenarios with comparisons of the USA, UK and Germany approaches to claim construction and validity determination.

This seminar will provide:-

  • Examine the UK Supreme Court introduction of a doctrine of equivalents in Actavis v Lilly* Contrast the doctrines of equivalents and purposive construction
  • Explore the decisions in Germany limiting the doctrine of equivalents
  • Contrast the doctrines of equivalents and purposive construction
  • Analyse validity requirements
  • Illustrate the major issues with panel discussion, comparative examples and case studies

Why you should attend

This seminar provides:

  • A comprehensive overview of the principles of patent claim interpretation in the USA, UK and Germany
  • A full examination of the UK court judgments relevant to the UK’s doctrine of equivalents. Learn how the scope of protection against infringement has been extended, whereas the meaning of a patent claim and its effect on novelty has not
  • An in-depth look at a long series of decisions in Germany limiting the application of the doctrine of equivalents. Understand how the Supreme Court put an end to this with its decisions on Pemetrexed and ‘Heat Exchanger’
  • A comparison and explanation of the varying approaches for determining when a patent claim that does not literally describe an accused system is nonetheless infringed
  • Exemplary fact scenarios, with comparisons of the USA, UK and German approaches to claim construction and validity determination
  • Recommendations for both litigating patents and preparing patent applications
  • Question and discussion opportunities throughout the day

Who should attend

  • Patent Professionals in private practice, including patent attorneys and lawyers
  • Heads of IP, Heads of Patents and in-house patent counsel at every level
  • Patent Engineers and inventors
  • All whose responsibilities include th need to understand the scope of patent coverage in USA, UK and Germany


I. Patent claim construction generally

A. In the USA

  • Inherent ambiguities of the ‘All Elements Rule’
  • Use of intrinsic and extrinsic evidence
  • Counterintuitive interpretation of functional claims

B. In the UK

  • Court’s approach to the ‘normal’ interpretation of the claims …
    • … and the (wider) scope of protection under the UK doctrine of equivalents
  • Accepted principles of claim construction (Virgin Atlantic)
  • The approach taken to parameters, numerals and specific claim form

C. In Germany

  • Literal infringement and ‘functional’ interpretation
  • ‘Functional’ interpretation can result in construction ‘below’ the wording?
  • Numerals and literal infringement

II. Doctrines of equivalents and purposive construction

A. In the USA

  • Sub-tests for determining equivalents
  • Counterweights to ‘equivalence’
    • Vitiation
    • Prosecution history estoppel and its variants

B. In the UK

The groundbreaking judgment in Actavis vs Lilly
  • Does a ‘variant’ vary from the invention in an immaterial way?
    • Achieving substantially the same result in the same way
    • Obviousness to skilled person of the same ‘way’
    • Is strict compliance to ‘normal’ claim meaning essential to the Invention?
  • Compliance with EPC Article 69 and Protocol
  • UK court’s willingness to refer to EPO prosecution history

C. In Germany

  • The Schneidmesser questions
  • Relevance of Pemetrexed
  • Has the scope of protection become broader again?
  • Relevance of prosecution history

III. Validity analysis

A. In the USA

  • Four-part non-obvious analysis
  • Reliance on the specification to construe the claims but without importing limitations
  • Traps for European specifications filed in the USA

B. In the UK

  • Construction and the four-step Pozzoli test for obviousness
  • Novelty: narrower claim meaning for novelty than scope for infringement

C. In Germany

  • Differences between approach of the EPO and the German Supreme Court
  • Consequences of Germany’s bifurcation system

IV. Comparative examples and case studies

Presentation and panel discussion on the construction, infringement and validity of granted patents: comparative analysis and case studies


Ulrich Blumenroeder

Ulrich Blumenröder is a partner at Grűnecker, Kinkeldey, Stockmair & Schwanhäusser, an IP-firm in Munich, which focuses equally on both IP-litigation and IP-prosecution.
He is active in all fields of intellectual property but primarily specialises in patent litigation. He has litigated for both plaintiffs and defendants in all prominent German courts in normal as well as preliminary injunction proceedings.
He frequently gives lectures on various topics of patent law. He has written articles and is author of ‘German Regulations on Industrial Products’ (1997).

Bradley Hulbert

Bradley Hulbert is a founding partner in McDonnell Boehnen Hulbert & Berghoff LLP, an 80-lawyer patent firm in Chicago. He has been lead counsel in a wide range of successful patent lawsuits and has overseen the development of a diverse range of extensive, international patent portfolios. He is an adjunct professor of law at the Chicago-Kent Law School.

Dafyyd Bevan

Dafydd Bevan advises clients on the enforcement and commercialisation of intellectual property. He has particular experience of strategic advice on the litigation and licensing of TMT, electronics and software patents, regularly advising clients on such cases in the High Court and Court of Appeal. He has a broad range of experience, which, in the technology sector, includes advising on patents in fields such as software, broadcasting, graphical user interfaces, mobile telephony, network communications and internet applications. This includes recent and ongoing advice on FRAND and SEP licensing issues and related litigation. Dafydd’s other patent litigation experience relates to oil and gas machinery and more general mechanical patents ranging from household equipment to industrial machinery. Dafydd also has significant experience in advising on the interaction of co-pending UK litigation and opposition proceedings at the European Patent Office, having worked closely with Marks & Clerk’s patent attorneys on a large number of oppositions relating to parallel UK litigation proceedings.

In addition to his patent practice, Dafydd has considerable experience of advising on the litigation of designs, including advice on UK and EU registered and unregistered designs across a broad range of products. Dafydd often also advises on disputes relating to trade marks, copyright and confidential information. As well as his litigation and dispute resolution experience, Dafydd has broad experience of advising clients on commercial and transactional matters involving licensing and commercialisation of intellectual property and has significant experience of IP due diligence. He has worked on R&D collaboration agreements, licensing and sponsorship arrangements, employee IP issues and the IP aspects of corporate transactions.

Continuing professional development

This course qualifies for the following CPD programmes:

  • CPD certificate of attendance: 5.50 hours
  • General Council of the Bar: 5.50 hours

Book now

17 May 2019
17 May 2019 Cavendish Hotel, London GBP 699.00
EUR 979.00
USD 1,090.00
+ VAT @ 20.00%
Enrol now

Previous customers include...

  • Abzena plc
  • Alison Gallafent Limited
  • Appleyard Lees IP LLP
  • AstraZeneca
  • Boult Wade Tennant
  • British Telecommunications plc
  • Clyde & Co LLP
  • Coloplast A/S
  • Datalogic IP Tech Srl
  • De La Rue Holdings plc
  • DSM Intellectual Property B.V.
  • DSM IP Assets BV
  • Holme Patent A/S
  • Institut Straumann
  • J K Gadzama & Partners
  • Kao Germany GmbH
  • Kolster Oy Ab
  • Maiwald Patentanwalts GmbH
  • Metayage IP Strategy Consulting LLP
  • Müller Fottner Steinecke Rechtsanwalts- und Patentanwaltspartnerschaft mbB
  • Nestle Research Centre
  • NLO
  • Renishaw plc
  • Rolls-Royce plc
  • Solvay SA
  • Sony Europe Limited
  • Swisscom (Switzerland) Ltd.
  • Syngenta
  • Williams Powell
  • Zacco Denmark A/S

Brilliant course and content. Clear and brilliant speakers.

Cristian Benelli, IP Manager, GEA Procomac

Excellent venue/presentation/speakers. Interactive.

Peter Ten Haaft, European and Dutch Patent Attorney, NLO


Joe Gaal, Senior Patent Attorney, Syngenta Ltd