24 Jan 2007
Independent report recommends mediation for Intellectual Property disputes
The much awaited Gowers Review of Intellectual Property in the UK, which was commissioned by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, recognises the need for IP practitioners and judges to consider mediation as a possible form of dispute resolution stating that it is currently "poorly used and understood."
Whilst the Review concludes that the UK has a fundamentally strong IP system, it sets out important targeted reforms. The reforms aim to:
- strengthen enforcement of IP rights to protect the UK's creative industries from piracy and counterfeiting (with the music industry currently losing as much as 20 per cent of its annual turnover);
- provide additional support for British businesses using IP in the UK and abroad; and
- strike the right balance to encourage firms and individuals to innovate and invest in new ideas while ensuring that markets remain competitive and that future innovation is not impeded.
Notably the report recommends "greater encouragement for parties to mediate in particular this should raise the profile of mediation with judges." In response to this under utilisation, the report suggests that practice directions should be amended to encourage more mediation by judges and legal practitioners.
For full details visit The Gowers Review website.