Sir James Dyson (The Telegraph, 25 September 2012)
"The engineer, most famous for designing the bagless vacuum cleaner, said high costs and an effective bias towards infringers meant inventors and small companies felt unable to enforce their rights.But the new, improved Dyson sounds like music to the ear, if you're a British patent litigator at any rate:
... [he said that] it can easily cost £3m to fight a case in the UK, and 'tens of millions of dollars' in the US. 'It gets to the point where [a small business] can’t afford to carry on.'
He added that only 18pc of UK legal disputes are won by rights holders. -The system does not support design and patent holders. You don’t bring a case because of the expense and the risk that if you lose, you pay the other side’s costs. The 82pc [that lose legal disputes] have gone to all the trouble and expense of developing the technology and then some company comes along and rides on their coat tails. It’s grossly unfair.'
Sir James suggested elements of the 'simpler' German and French patent systems could be adopted in the UK to reduce the length, cost and complexity of cases".
Sir James Dyson (CIPA press release, 10 September 2013) has chosen to take legal action against Samsung in the High Court in London, rather than in Germany, where the alleged infringement was first spotted.
“When a Korean company, active in Germany, is first sued in the UK it shows the international nature of business and IP law,” commented Jim Boff, a spokesman for the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys. “Dyson’s decision to bring action in the UK is doubtless influenced by the fact that the UK Intellectual Property Office has been efficient and has granted a patent in a relatively short time. Dyson’s corresponding patent applications in Korea and at the European Patent Office do not appear to be granted yet. Whether this litigation will be the start of court actions worldwide or will be the prelude to a settlement is yet to be seen.”
How has this dramatic change been engineered, wonders an admiring Merpel. Perhaps her readers know.
Late change: after posting, this Kat found a link sent in by Katfriend Lawrence Ryz to this news item from the BBC: it seems that Samsung is the target and that the patent is for a steering mechanism