§ (2) In subsection (2) (persons exempt from subsection (1)), the following paragraphs shall be inserted after paragraph (a)
- "(aa) a registered trade mark agent drawing or preparing any instrument relating to any design, trade mark or service mark;
- (ab) a registered patent agent drawing or preparing any instrument relating to any invention, design, technical information, trade mark or service mark."
(3) The following subsection shall be inserted after subsection (3)—
(3A) In subsection (2)—
- "registered trade mark agent" has the same meaning as in section 282(1) of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988; and
- "registered patent agent" has the same meaning as in section 275(1) of that Act".'.—[The Attorney-General.]
§ Brought up, and read the First time.
§ The Attorney-General
The new clause and the amendment amend section 22 of the Solicitors Act 1974, which makes it an offence for an unqualified person to prepare certain instruments so as to permit registered trade mark agents to draw or prepare any instrument relating to any design, trade mark or service mark, and to permit registered patent agents to draw or prepare any instrument relating to any invention, design, technical information, trade mark or service mark. The new clause also defines the meaning of those terms. Amendment No. 116 ensures that the provisions of new clause 21 will not be undermined by the provisions of section 102 and 102(a) of the Patents Act 1977.
The present monopoly is not thought to serve any real purpose in consumer protection and unnecessarily adds to 545 the cost of the service that trade mark and patent agents provide to the public. As the monopoly relates neither to advocacy nor to the conduct of litigation and as these transfers are not conveyances in the sense in which that term is used in part II of the Bill, there is no way in which the monopoly can be altered under the machinery created by the Bill.
The amendments have the support of the Chartered Institute of Patent Agents and the Institute of Trade Mark Agents. Looked at in the round, they are in the general public interest.
§ Question put and agreed to.
§ Clause read a Second time, and added to the Bill.