Miller Sturt Kenyon: Meet the Team
We are pleased to be once again working with Miller Sturt Kenyon, who are keen to further build upon the successes of their electronics practice with the hire of an additional trainee patent attorney. In support of our joint on line advertisement we have provided the following insight into life at MSK from one of their latest recruits Emily Crizzle, a trainee UK and European patent attorney working in the electronics practice.
What first motivated you to become a patent attorney?
When I finished my degree, I knew I wanted to work in a scientific field that was client focussed and involved short-term projects. I looked into a few options and came across the patent profession for the first time. I found the idea of working in the legal sector appealing, particularly having to communicate inventions and construct arguments based on their inventive concepts. The job ticked all the boxes, and in the end, it was the profession’s international nature coupled with its job security that really drew me in.
What was it about the role at Miller Sturt Kenyon that encouraged you to make the decision to move?
Initially, it was the opportunity to have the best of both worlds, as MSK has the family feel environment of an SME together with a strong international client base in Japan and the US. Having met with directors Andy and Matt at the interviews, I was impressed by their commitment to maintaining international client relationships and the support and training they offered. The office is also based in central London, and having never lived in London before, the location definitely influenced my decision!
You’re currently working towards qualification as a patent attorney in the UK and Europe, give us an idea of the support and training that is available to you.
The support and training is tailored to my needs and I find everyone to be very approachable. On a day to day basis, the attorney whose case I am working on always gives me thorough feedback and I have been impressed with the amount of time they take to talk over cases with me. In preparation for the exams, MSK have been supportive by giving me the freedom to decide when to take an exam and whether to do a residential course in preparation for an exam.
Describe a typical working day at Miller Sturt Kenyon.
My typical day sees me prosecuting applications at the European and UK patent offices. This involves advising clients of the patentability of their inventions and responding to search and examination reports issued by the patent offices. Although the client base spans both nationally and internationally, I mainly work on prosecuting international cases received from our multinational clients and also from foreign attorneys who are looking to protect their client’s invention in the UK and Europe.
I have had various opportunities to draft on a wide variety of technologies, which involves getting to grips with the invention and communicating it in a way that provides legal protection. When I’m not working on client cases, I update the office on the latest changes to law practice across the world and get involved with networking events.
What types of technologies and client mix do you have the opportunity to work with?
Although my background is in physics, I have had the opportunity to work on a wide range of technologies, from electronics to material sciences, and I have found that MSK have been very accommodating in training me in technologies that I am not so familiar with. Our clients are also wide ranging, from multinational corporations such as Epson to universities and local start-up businesses.
What level of input do you have in shaping the direction of your career?
The flexibility and freedom of MSK’s training gives me a unique level of independence into shaping my future, and once qualified, there is a clear career progression to associate and director.
What opportunities are available to you for interaction and collaboration with colleagues, support staff and Partners?
Although I mainly work under the supervision of my supervisor, I work on cases from all the attorneys in the office. I have found this to be very helpful in learning different techniques on how to approach cases, as each attorney offers a unique insight into the methodology of working through a case.
We have a weekly meeting that involves all the staff to discuss any new changes to office procedures, which gives the opportunity to understand how the company as a whole is operating. There is also a monthly business development meeting in which ideas are welcomed, so there are lots of opportunities to get involved with shaping the direction of the company.
What do you enjoy most about being a patent attorney?
I think the best part of the job is getting to be at the forefront of innovation. It is fascinating to learn about cutting edge technologies and how they can be applied to solve real world problems. I think the patent profession offers a rare insight into such a variety of technologies, so that no two days are the same. I also think that in terms of work-life balance the profession offers a stable career without the high stress culture normally destined for the legal sector.
Interested in hearing more? Get in touch with Pete Fellows or Phillipa Holland on +44 207 903 5019 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for a confidential chat.
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