Host a Patent Examiner! – 2018/2019

The Informals Committee is happy to announce the opening of the annual trainee patent examiner hosting event. This will be the fourth annual running of the event, and based on feedback, it has become very popular amongst the IP community.

The IPO intends to send trainee patent examiners on day-long visits to patent attorneys in private practice and in-house departments. The aim of this event is to mirror the annual CIPA Informals event and allow trainee patent examiners to gain insight into the day-to-day activities of a patent attorney. This event is also a great opportunity for patent attorneys to show patent examiners what happens on the patent prosecution side.

The visits are scheduled to take place any time from November 2018 to the end of March 2019. Once examiners (in groups of up to 6) have been allocated to an attorney firm then they will be in touch to arrange the best time for a visit to take place.

Firms and in-house IP departments can sign up by emailing their details to (Please include: name of organisation, location, contact details, how many examiners can attend the visit, and any availability limitations).

A brief with more details of the visit will be sent to firms once places have been confirmed and allocated.

We look forward to hearing from everyone.

Sanam Habib

Informals Patent Office Liaison


Women In IP – now reachable on Twitter!

The Women in IP group is a support and networking group focusing on issues that can predominantly affect women working in the Intellectual Property (IP) professions. The group and its events are open to both women and men who are interested in these issues and how they can be addressed.

The group seeks to support women already working within the IP professions and to encourage the next generation of female IP practitioners to join the profession and climb through its ranks. You do not have to be a patent or trade mark attorney to join the group or attend its events – anyone working in IP is welcome.

The group aims to host a number of events each year, in various locations around the UK.  The events will be a mixture of talks and panel discussions as well as more informal social events.

The Women in IP/IP Inclusive event posted last week managed to achieve 100 sign-ups in just 2 days!

You can keep up with their news and events here. You can also keep up-to-date by joining their LinkedIn®Group.

You can now also follow their new Twitter feed here!

Flexible working and career breaks – making them work for you and others


When: Thursday 22nd November, 17:00-20:00

Where: Gowling WLG, 4 More London Riverside, London, SE1 2AU

IP Inclusive’s Women in IP group invites you to its third annual meeting, proudly hosted by Gowling WLG, on Thursday 22 November 2018.

We will host a panel discussion followed by the chance for you to network with your peers from across the IP professions. We welcome IP professionals of all genders.

This year’s panel discussion will focus on flexible working and career breaks. Confirmed speakers include:

Ben Hoyle – of Counsel, EIP Europe LLP

Heather Lane – Partner, Gill Jennings & Every LLP

Vicki McKinney – Senior Patent Attorney, Shell International Limited

We will be hearing from these panellists about their experiences of flexible working, including the hurdles they have encountered and what others did to help them, and generally how to use flexible working arrangements to help manage your work/life balance in the IP professions. We will hopefully also have some lively discussions with the audience, and there will be time afterwards for drinks, networking and further informal discussions around this fascinating and important topic.

The event is free, but spaces are limited. We hope you can join us for a fun and inspirational evening!

To register for the event please sign up here.

Sponsored by:


Cambridge Social: End of Exams Celebration! – Thursday 18th Oct 2018


When: Thursday 18th October 2018, 17:30-20:30

Where: Novi, 12 Regent St, Cambridge CD2 1DB

Informals members are invited to a complimentary ‘cocktail master class’ at NOVI, in Cambridge on 18th October 2018.

To celebrate the end of exam season, a Master Mixologist will demonstrate the art of cocktail making, allowing you to mix and taste your very own blends.

There will also be a variety of (alcoholic and soft) complimentary drinks, sharing platters and nibbles served.

We would love it if you could make it. To register on our Eventbrite page, click here.

Results of Mental Health Awareness Week Survey

As you will recall, IP Inclusive ran a survey earlier this year regarding mental health in the patent profession. They have now published a report of the results of the survey on their blog:

We have been asked by the IP Inclusive Leader, Andrea Brewster, to pass on her thanks to all of you who completed the survey. It is notable that the student survey received a higher response rate than the one for CIPA Fellows. This may indicate that students are more comfortable with talking about mental health and we hope that this openness continues and can be used to help improve mental health across the profession in the future.

The results of the survey make interesting (and in some cases concerning) reading. Significant levels of work-related stress, anxiety and depression were reported. For students, these were often linked to the qualifying exams. This is perhaps unsurprising, but also indicates a key area in which employers, CIPA and the Informals can work to improve mental health for patent trainees.

IP Inclusive have pledged to work with CIPA – and with relevant charities such as LawCare and Jonathan’s Voice (to whom the report is dedicated) – to make things happen in response to the survey to improve mental health for IP professionals. The Informals Committee, as part of CIPA, are also committed to working with IP Inclusive to ensure that support and resources are available for students who may need them.

Please remember that you can contact LawCare’s helpline on 0800 279 6888 for free and confidential support. The helpline operates 0900-1930 Monday to Friday and 1000-1600 at weekends and bank holidays. If you urgently need to contact someone outside of these hours, you can call the Samaritans on 116 123.

The Informals Committee

North West Informals Summer Social – Tues July 10th @ Junkyard Golf!

When: July 10th 2018, 18:00

Where: Junkyard Golf, 2 First St, Manchester, M15 4RP


The North West Informals Summer social will be at Junkyard Golf on the 10th July, to celebrate the opening of EQE 2019 enrolment the day before, and to celebrate the EQE 2018 results that might be published by then! have now been published!

Golfers should book the GARY course for 18:10 on their own initiative at the Junkyard golf Booking Page, please book early to avoid disappointment. The cost is £8 per person, but there will be a £4 per person CIPA rebate for golfing upon providing a receipt, making the golf half price!

If Gary is full for 18:10 contact Adam Hope and we will book another course too, there are two more available.

Please arrive by 18:00 to ensure enough time to order your complementary drink and fill out your waiver form.

Following the activity we will go to one of the excellent bars in the area for a debrief.

More information about Junkyard Golf can be found here.


Message from the PEB – Examination Registration Window Now Open

The registration window for the PEB October 2018 qualifying examinations is now open. The registration form is available here.

The closing date for receipt of a correctly completed form and the money paid on an invoice issued to you after the form is received is Friday 20 July.

All examination dates, fees and other information can be found here.

Anyone who is unable to sit examinations FD1, FC2 and FD4 taking place on 1 and 2 October 2018 due to religious observance of Jewish Festivals, is invited to contact the PEB at to discuss possible alternative arrangements.

The sample scripts from the 2017 examination series with the examiners’ annotations are now on the PEB website here.

The Law Update is now on the PEB website here.

Please note there is a change to the PEB refund policy for Qualifying Examinations which now reads:

Withdrawals from Qualifying Examinations

If a candidate withdraws from any Qualifying Examination at any time, the fee paid is neither refundable nor transferable after receipt by the candidate of confirmation of registration, with the following exceptions:

A full refund will be given to candidates who:

  • withdraw from FD2 (P3) or FD3 (P4) within one month of the publication of the EQE results;
  • enter for the PEB English Law (FC2) examination and are subsequently granted an exemption before the examination takes place.

If you wish to withdraw from FC2, FD2 or FD3, please contact the PEB.

Please note in submitting an entry for any PEB examination you are agreeing to the published policies.

London Bowling Social – 14th May!

Where: All Star Lanes Holborn, WC1B 

When: Monday 14th May, 7.30pm

Please join us at All Star Lanes Holborn on at 7.30pm on 14 May for a night of food, drinks, and bowling! For those attending the CIPA Informals lecture at CIPA Hall at 5.30pm, we will head there together on foot afterwards.

The night will begin with food and drinks at 7.30pm, followed by two rounds of bowling. You will need only bring money for food (menu here) and drinks – the bowling itself will kindly be paid for by the CIPA Informals. 

Places are very limited and will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis – please sign up by emailing with your name by 4 May.


Look forward to seeing you there!


Your London social secs

Exam Mentoring

Have you sat FD1 (P2) or FD4 (P6) twice or more times without success?

Do you intend to sit the examination again this October?

The Informals Committee is working with CIPA to offer mentoring if you have repeatedly sat one of these papers, to try to boost your self-confidence and help you pass the exam.

If you are in this situation and you would like help preparing for the 2018 exam, please email Informals Honorary Secretary Sara Jane Paines ( by 16:00 on Friday 4 May and tell her which exam(s) you would like help with.  The Informals Committee will then work with CIPA to find you a mentor.  Please note that you must already have sat the same exam twice or more times without success to be eligible for mentoring.

Your information will be treated in confidence and will be known only to Sara Jane and your mentor.  You will not be identified to your employer without your explicit consent.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with Sara Jane.

IP Inclusive – Careers in Ideas Event, Tuesday 10 April, 2018

Careers in Ideas

IP Inclusive, in association with CIPA, CITMA and our headline sponsor Dehns, invite you to the launch of Careers In Ideas on Tuesday 10 April, 2018.  The launch will be held at the home of the Royal Society of Medicine, 1 Wimpole Street, London, W1G 0AE.

Careers in Ideas is an initiative that was created for anyone considering – or who might consider – a career in the world of intellectual property, and for those who support them in their choices: careers advisers, teachers and parents.

This launch event gives everyone the opportunity to see the Careers in Ideas resources and take part in a discussion regarding the next steps to disseminate this information and help to increase diversity in IP.   We welcome not only IP professionals and their colleagues, but also professionals from the education, careers and outreach sectors.

Doors open at 5.30 pm, with welcome drinks and networking.  IP Inclusive leader, Andrea Brewster, will open the event at 6 pm.  Guests will have the opportunity to hear about how Careers In Ideas came about, including a presentation showcasing the Careers In Ideas website and resources.  This will be followed by a panel discussion with, we hope, lots of audience participation.  With the formalities out of the way by about 7.15 pm, we will enjoy a launch party with drinks and canapes.

To register your attendance, please visit

We look forward to seeing you there!


Careers in Ideas is a powerful, profession-wide outreach initiative which can add strength and credibility to individual organisations’ recruitment efforts.  We hope, therefore, that this showcase event will be of interest and value to all IP professionals.