Where We Work


Close teamwork with our European clients as well as with other practice groups at Sughrue, and excellent technical and legal competence coupled with a solid understanding of and personal experience with cultural, economic and legal conditions in Europe allows us to provide our European clients with the best possible support to protect their intellectual properties. 

Prior to joining Sughrue, attorneys at Sughrue’s European Practice Group gained valuable experience at patent departments of European companies or at European law firms. Some of our attorneys grew up in Europe, are native speakers of European languages, or obtained their technical and legal education in Europe. Therefore, we understand the nuances of regional business cultures and the differences in approaches to deal with legal and technical challenges.

Our members of the European practice group work closely together with our European colleagues. Attorneys of Sughrue’s European Practice Group are members of European professional associations, such as for example the German Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (GRUR), and frequently lecture in Europe on current topics related to U.S. Intellectual Property Law, in particular on the America Invents Act (AIA) and the USPTO Post-Grant Proceedings, which are of great interest for our European colleagues and clients.

Prosecution and litigation in Patent and Trademark matters is often coupled with a review of documents that are originally provided in a foreign environment and language, and with an assessment of the specific context in which such documents were created. Although translations are generally available, valuable information may be lost or interpretations may differ when such documents are simply translated or interpreted out of the regional context. Our regional competence and background knowledge in European technical and legal culture helps us to study these documents in their context and often in their original language to provide the most benefit for our European clients.

In the interest of our European clients, we work closely together and exchange our experiences with our colleagues from other regional practice groups at Sughrue, and in particular with our Tokyo office. Attorneys of these practice groups have exceptional language skills and profound knowledge of cultural, business and legal culture in Asia, South and Central America and the Middle East. Our European Practice Group makes sure that Sughrue’s global experience is made fully available to our European clients.

USPTO Publishes Rules and Examination Guidelines for Implementing ‎the AIA First-Inventor-to-File Provisions ‎

On February 14, 2013, final rules of practice for implementing the first-inventor-to-file provision of the Leahy-Smith ‎America Invents Act (AIA) were published in the Federal Register. The first-inventor-to-file provisions of the AIA go ‎into effect on March 16, 2013.

Examination guidelines concerning the first inventor to file provisions were also published in the Federal Register ‎on February 14, 2013. The examination guidelines are provided to Office personnel and to the public to assist in ‎the implementation of the first-inventor-to-file provisions of the AIA. The guidelines do not constitute substantive ‎rulemaking and do not have the force and effect of law. Nevertheless, the guidelines are an important source of ‎information for effectively practicing before the USPTO.

Links to the final rules and guidelines are below:

Changes To Implement and Examination Guidelines for Implementing the First Inventor To File Provisions of the ‎Leahy-Smith America Invents Act [TEXT] [PDF]

Examination Guidelines for Implementing the First Inventor To File Provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents ‎Act[TEXT] [PDF]