Article March 16, 2018

Record numbers of hearings at the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court

In 2013, following recommendations from consultations, the UK government formed the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court. It was introduced as a small claims track for intellectual property disputes, as a low-cost and less complex alternative to the High Court for settling IP disputes.

The IPEC is particularly suited to small companies and parties, and generally handles lower value IP disputes.  The fixed amounts on recovery of fees and damages from the opposing party, as well as having  time-limited hearing procedure help to keep costs down.

Latest figures reveal the court’s popularity has increased, with a record number of parties choosing to litigate within the IPEC, rather than taking their case to the High Court.  A total of 367 cases were heard in the IPEC in 2017, an increase of 8% on the year before.

However, the court data reveals only the tip of the iceberg.  Most IP disputes are settled behind closed doors.

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