EPO deadlock broken at last

30 October 2003

European Patent Office deadlock broken at last

Bruce Alexander, Vice President of the Chartered Institute of Patent Agents (CIPA) welcomed the resolution of the deadlock over who was to be the European Patent Office’s next President. “This issue has dragged on for months and, given the crucial role the Office plays in Europe’s business affairs, this uncertainty cannot have been a good thing”, he said.

Bruce went on to say, “At their meeting on 20 March, the European Patent Organisation's Administrative Council could not agree upon a successor to Ingo Kober as President of the European Patent Office (EPO). The issue was still not resolved at a further meeting in June. Finally, we were told on 30 October, that Mr. Alain Pompidou (France) will become the President for a three-year term beginning on 1st July 2004 after which Ms. Alison Brimelow (UK) will take over for a further term of three years”.

“Whilst Mr. Pompidou is something of an unknown quantity to CIPA’s membership, Ms. Brimelow, who is head of the UK Patent Office, is very well known and very well respected. We hope and expect she will continue to concentrate her efforts on improving customer services as she has in the UK Office”.


The Chartered Institute of Patent Agents (CIPA) is the professional body representing Patent Attorneys in the UK. CIPA was founded in 1882 and incorporated by Royal Charter in 1891. Patent Attorneys, on behalf of their clients, submit the majority of patent applications in both the UK and Europe. Entry on the Register of Patent Agents provides Patent Attorneys with the right to conduct litigation and to act as advocates in the Patents County Court. Fellows of CIPA can also acquire an additional qualification (Litigator’s Certificate) entitling them also to conduct litigation in the Chancery Division of the High Court (including the Patents Court) and to conduct appeals from the Patents County Court, the County Court and the Chancery Division of the High Court in respect of Intellectual Property litigation.