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Becoming a Patent Agent/Lawyer
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   Difference between Patent Attorney and IP Lawyer
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guest23433
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Difference between Patent Attorney and IP Lawyer
« on: Jun 11th, 2007, 3:27pm »
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I've heard these 2 terms juggled around. What is the exact distinction?
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mr.physics
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Re: Difference between Patent Attorney and IP Lawy
« Reply #1 on: Jun 11th, 2007, 10:16pm »
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Patent attorney: lawyer who passed the exam for registeration to practice before the USPTO (referred to as the patent bar).  This registration allows them to prosecute patents on behalf of their clients.
 
IP lawyer: lawyer who focuses their practice in the areas of IP.  This would include copyrights, trademarks, and patents (can't prosecute, but can represent clients in litigation).
 
All patent attorneys are IP lawyers, but not all IP lawyers are patent attorneys.  To be eligible to sit for the patent bar requires a background in the sciences or engineering.
 
Hope this helps.
 
Cheers
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Isaac
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Re: Difference between Patent Attorney and IP Lawy
« Reply #2 on: Jun 12th, 2007, 7:03am »
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on Jun 11th, 2007, 10:16pm, MR Wisc wrote:
IP lawyer: lawyer who focuses their practice in the areas of IP.  This would include copyrights, trademarks, and patents (can't prosecute, but can represent clients in litigation).

 
Another difference is that the term "IP attorney" is largely an informal one, while patent attorney is a formal term sanctioned by federal law.  The bar rules in most jurisdictions prohibit lawyers from calling themselves specialists unless they have a special certification to practice a particular kind of law.    There is of course a certification/registration program for patent attorneys, but none for copyright, trademark, or IP attorneys.
 
Attorneys can limit or concentrate their practice to particular matters which is somewhat different from claiming to be a specialist in a particular matter.
 
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Isaac
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