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What an IP Co-ordinator should know: Closing patent loopholes

As part of our series examining the ecosystem necessary to bring technology to market, David French, a senior Canadian patent attorney with 35 years of experience, now provides his next commentary on the importance to a company of protecting its Intellectual Property.

By David French

In the previous postings in this series I talked about the importance of having an IP Co-ordinator on the team and the three principles that apply if the objective is to obtain meaningful patents, This time, I will address how “loopholes” can seriously undermine the value of a patent.

Everybody has heard that patents can have loopholes. Often, the truth that a patent has loopholes is only appreciated when an attempt is made to enforce the patent against a competitor. When this occurs, the competitor, after consulting with a specialist, may be able to modify its product so that it does not fall within the scope of the claims of your patent. How does this unfortunate situation arise?

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