Intellectual Property on the High Seas | Asia IP Magazine

August 29, 2023 | Mentions

With the maritime industry seeing a wave of innovation activities in the United States, Asia IP Magazine featured insight from Jackson Walker attorneys Will Borchers, Arthur Gollwitzer, Chris Rourk as they discussed intellectual property and international trade issues related to maritime technology.

“It is fairly difficult to enforce a patent subject to the Paris Convention against vessels that are only engaged in international trade due to the temporary presence exception, which limits patent rights under those circumstances. Thus, just trying to enforce a patent against a visiting ship is probably not easy in most jurisdictions, which keeps international trade open,” Will noted. He also pointed out that inventors could create items for maintaining and reconditioning ships, where the inventions could be used in a large number of countries.

“Likewise, inventions used only in international waters, such as building, mapping, and repairing underwater pipelines and cables, could also be made in numerous countries,” Art stated.

“Patent laws generally allow the patent owner to recover from someone who makes, uses or sells the invention, so it might be possible to claim an invention that is primarily used for maritime technology in a manner that would allow an infringement suit to be brought anywhere the ship docks, subject to the temporary presence exception,” Chris added. “In general, you have to look at the potential markets for a product, where a product is used, and where it might be manufactured to determine whether the geographical extent to IP rights is important to a specific maritime technology.”

To read more, visit the Asia IP Magazine article “Intellectual property on the high seas.”

Will BorchersMeet Will

William Borchers assists clients of all sizes identify, develop, secure, and monetize their inventions and creations. Before attending law school, Will spent four years as an engineer working with radar systems and aerospace vehicles. In his career, he has prepared over 300 and prosecuted over 500 patent applications in electronics, oilfield tools, computer networking, telecom, industrial automation, software, business methods, mechanical systems, medical devices, and optics.

Arthur GollwitzerMeet Art

Arthur Gollwitzer combines experience gained as a federal prosecutor with 25 years in private practice to represent clients in patent, copyright, trademark, and trade secret disputes, including jury trials and appeals. In addition to defending and enforcing intellectual property rights, Arthur is highly experienced in investigations and criminal litigation. Arthur writes and speaks frequently on patent litigation reform and other intellectual property issues.

Chris RourkMeet Chris

Christopher Rourk is a thought leader in artificial intelligence legal matters, with 10 years’ field experience as a former engineer and over two decades of diverse legal experience. He has prosecuted 400+ patents to issuance in diverse technological fields such as nanotechnology devices, semiconductor systems and devices, radio frequency systems and devices, analog systems and devices, telecommunications systems and devices, medical devices, image data processing systems and devices, and consumer electronics.

In This Story

William R. Borchers
Partner, San Antonio

Arthur Gollwitzer
Partner, Austin

Christopher J. Rourk
Partner, Dallas