Intellectual Property Forums (http://www.intelproplaw.com/Forum/Forum.cgi)

(Message started by: Srac on Feb 21st, 2007, 8:42pm)

Title: Considering a career in patent law
Post by Srac on Feb 21st, 2007, 8:42pm
I am 27 and about a year and a half away from graduating with a PhD in organic chemistry (University of Alberta). From my training I gained lot of experience in synthetic organic chemistry, supramolecular chemistry (nanotechnology), and learned about material science. At this point I am somewhat concerned about what career path should I take once I am done and would be interested in learning about the career opportunities in the IP field that could be available for me. There are few questions I thought I would start with, to get the conversation going,
1, Is there a strong market in this field for people with my background (preferably in Canada)?
2, How difficult (competitive) would it be for me to start a career in IP straight out of graduate school? What options do I - as a technically highly trained individual- have?
3, What could I do in the remaining time left in my PhD to prepare for this path?
I am looking forward for your opinion,
Cheers
Gabor  ???

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by LJP on Mar 1st, 2007, 7:13am
1. There is a good market for Patent Agents in Canada. Additionally, It is not as important to have a law degree in Canada as it appears to be in the US.

2. One way to increase you competitiveness would be experience as an patent examiner.
http://strategis.ic.gc.ca/sc_mrksv/cipo/patents/pt_employopps_p4-e.html

(search this forum for working conditions/salary)

3. Is your Supervisor planning on submitting anything for a patent in the next few months? If so, volunteer to write a draft application. It will give you a little experience as well as saving you Prof. some money since he can forward the draft to his patent agent. You might also volunteer to act as liaison.

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by Srac on Mar 3rd, 2007, 3:09pm
Thank you for your reply, I found your response pretty useful. I looked up the website you listed. It seems to me that starting as a Patent Examiner Trainee could be one option for me. I understand that there are multiple levels, like SG-PAT-02 or 03, etc. From the website it did not become completely clear to me what the difference is between them. Do you know perhaps?

You mentioned that if my supervisor is planning to patent any of my work I should volunteer for writing the draft. Well, he did mention it to me earlier that he is planning to patent one of my results. The downside is that he actually does not want to put me on the patent. His reasoning is that the project was his idea, and I just carried it out (in my opinion, this is not completely true). What do you say, should I still volunteer whether I am on it or not.

You also did mention the possibility for volunteering to act as a liaison. I do not understand that part. What does this entitle?
Looking forward for your response,
Cheers
Gabor

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by biopico on Mar 3rd, 2007, 6:42pm
I would caution though in case your mentor is the type of person who may willfully and knowingly screw your research findings/research credit since you will be pursuing your career in IP law not in science.  

It is your judgement call whether it would be really helpful for your mentor to know your plan.  

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by LJP on Mar 5th, 2007, 9:33am

on 03/03/07 at 15:09:25, Srac wrote:
Thank you for your reply, I found your response pretty useful. I looked up the website you listed. It seems to me that starting as a Patent Examiner Trainee could be one option for me. I understand that there are multiple levels, like SG-PAT-02 or 03, etc. From the website it did not become completely clear to me what the difference is between them. Do you know perhaps?


SG-PAT-02, 03, 04 are pay levels. Having a PhD you will start at 03 and after 2 years training you will be promoted to 04. There are other posts that list the pay rates so I won't restate them.


Quote:
You mentioned that if my supervisor is planning to patent any of my work I should volunteer for writing the draft. Well, he did mention it to me earlier that he is planning to patent one of my results. The downside is that he actually does not want to put me on the patent. His reasoning is that the project was his idea, and I just carried it out (in my opinion, this is not completely true). What do you say, should I still volunteer whether I am on it or not.


Arrogance.... , it often seems it is a requirement of being a professor.

Not including an inventor on the application can lead to problems.
see
http://scc.lexum.umontreal.ca/en/2002/2002scc77/2002scc77.html


Quote:
You also did mention the possibility for volunteering to act as a liaison. I do not understand that part. What does this entitle?
Looking forward for your response,
Cheers
Gabor


Liason - you would basically be the person to explain the invention to the patent agent that will be writting the application.

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by Srac on Mar 8th, 2007, 7:44pm
LJP, I really liked the article you referred to. It has lots of twists and turns, but overall it gave me a pretty good picture on IP law in action. It made me think about my situation -my supervisor planning to leave me out of the patent, that is based on three years of my work- but after all I came to the conclusion that as a grad student I am very vulnerable. I believe that my supervisor has a strong hold on my career and I am deeply concerned about that.
I was also wondering if you know anyone who went down this patent examiner road in Canada. I would be interested to learn more about it. Like, what qualities should someone have in order to land a job with the Canadian Patent Office and to be successful as a patent examiner? How competitive is to get a job with them? What direction can this take someone, in other words what doors could a position like this open? I read pretty much everything on their website, but I found the information very general, lacking the insight I am looking for.
Point taken from “Biopico”, especially with my supervisor,
Cheers
Gabor


Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by LJP on Mar 9th, 2007, 6:12am

on 03/08/07 at 19:44:29, Srac wrote:
I was also wondering if you know anyone who went down this patent examiner road in Canada. I would be interested to learn more about it. Like, what qualities should someone have in order to land a job with the Canadian Patent Office and to be successful as a patent examiner? How competitive is to get a job with them? What direction can this take someone, in other words what doors could a position like this open? I read pretty much everything on their website, but I found the information very general, lacking the insight I am looking for.


I am an examiner.

Check out
http://www.intelproplaw.com/Forum/Forum.cgi?board=patent_career;action=display;num=1165342056
If you have further questions then post them.

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by Srac on Mar 10th, 2007, 12:55pm
In one of your replies on the forum you gave me the link to, you said that one has to be a Canadian citizen in order to apply for the patent examiner position. Is this written in stone, or permanent residents are eligible to apply as well?



Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by asdfg on Mar 11th, 2007, 10:22pm
I have a Ph.D in materials science and Physics  and preparing to take the patent bar exam - 2nd attempt. I am presently not working.  Can I   get a  job once I pass the exam or should I wait to complete registration which I think is about 8 weeks.

Thanks.

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by LJP on Mar 12th, 2007, 5:08am

on 03/10/07 at 12:55:41, Srac wrote:
In one of your replies on the forum you gave me the link to, you said that one has to be a Canadian citizen in order to apply for the patent examiner position. Is this written in stone, or permanent residents are eligible to apply as well?


I don't know if it is written in stone. A friend of mine (PhD) applied a couple of years ago and was not called in to write the test, which was strange. I asked my boss why he was excluded. He told me that he didn't even see his resume and that it was probably excluded because he didn't have his citizenship (he had his landed status).


This is from CIPO's site.

"Citizenship:
Preference will be given to Canadian citizens. Please indicate in your application the reason for which you are entitled to work in Canada: Canadian citizenship, permanent resident status or work permit."

This from The Public Service Commission of Canada

"While the Public Service Employment Act does not exclude non- Canadians from applying to positions in the federal public service, it clearly specifies that preference for appointment is to be given in the following order:

Person who is in receipt of a pension by reason of war service
Survivor of a war veteran
Canadian citizen
Other qualified individuals "

He may have been excluded because they obtained a large number of resumes.

I know in the last couple of rounds of hiring they have not been able to meet their hiring goals so you might have a chance.

Apply and see what happens.

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by LJP on Mar 12th, 2007, 8:52am

on 03/11/07 at 22:22:07, asdfg wrote:
I have a Ph.D in materials science and Physics  and preparing to take the patent bar exam - 2nd attempt. I am presently not working.  Can I   get a  job once I pass the exam or should I wait to complete registration which I think is about 8 weeks.

Thanks.


We're discussing Canadian patent Examiner position with a background in Chemistry

You appear to be asking about American patent Agent positions in physics. You might have more luck checking other threads or posting your own thread.

Sorry but can't offer more help.

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by Srac on Mar 12th, 2007, 9:51pm
LJP, thanks for the info. You gave me a good insight on the topic. As I said earlier, I am about a good year and a half away from graduating. So I will be applying probably next year if they have openings.

There is something else I would like to ask you about - and perhaps anyone else out there with IP experience-. My native language is not English. Although I lived and got educated in North America from age sixteen, I do not speak or write as a native.  Let me clarify this. I do not have a problem expressing myself in English and throughout college and in graduate school it seemed to me that I write well and clear, but the truth to be told, it can be spotted in my wordings, perhaps in my grammar that English is my second language. Will this hinder me in this field? In other words, will I be disadvantaged because I am not a native speaker / writer?  

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by LJP on Mar 13th, 2007, 5:10am

on 03/12/07 at 21:51:08, Srac wrote:
LJP, thanks for the info. You gave me a good insight on the topic. As I said earlier, I am about a good year and a half away from graduating. So I will be applying probably next year if they have openings.

There is something else I would like to ask you about - and perhaps anyone else out there with IP experience-. My native language is not English. Although I lived and got educated in North America from age sixteen, I do not speak or write as a native.  Let me clarify this. I do not have a problem expressing myself in English and throughout college and in graduate school it seemed to me that I write well and clear, but the truth to be told, it can be spotted in my wordings, perhaps in my grammar that English is my second language. Will this hinder me in this field? In other words, will I be disadvantaged because I am not a native speaker / writer?  



Language shouldn't be a problem.

Also, keep in mind if you plan to apply to CIPO apply 6 months before you hope to start. It is government and therefore a long process. For me it was close to one year from application to start date.

Title: Re: Considering a career in patent law
Post by Srac on Mar 19th, 2007, 5:47pm
LJP, thanks for the info. You have been very helpful. As I see it now, I will give a shot next year, and apply. Cheers
Gabor



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