Patent decision

BL number
Concerning rights in
Hearing Officer
Mr G J Rose'Meyer
Decision date
6 December 2007
Person(s) or Company(s) involved
Satellite Antenna Company Limited
Provisions discussed
PA Act 1977 Section 28(3)
Related Decisions


The renewal fee for the thirteenth year of the patent fell due on 15 November 2004. Under section 25(4), the patent could be renewed (with appropriate fines) up to 15 May 2005. The current proprietor and applicant for restoration was the Satellite Antenna Company Limited, though during the relevant period - 15 August 2004 - 15 May 2005 - the patent belonged to “Littlextra” Multifeed Systems Limited who acquired rights in it by virtue of an assignment from Stik (International) Limited dated 8 August 2000. In his role as Company Secretary of “Littlextra” Multifeed Systems Limited and Stik (International) Limited, Mr David Mitchell was responsible for arranging payment of the renewal fees.

In previous years Mr Mitchell had in place an acceptable and functioning patent renewal system. He employed a firm of patent attorneys and the systems they operated worked well. Mr Mitchell’s usual procedure was to pay the renewal fees late. Evidence showed he generally paid fees in respect of the whole patent family together and paid before 15 May final payment date of the EP (UK) patent.

Taking into account the evidence filed, the hearing officer considered that Mr Mitchell did not take reasonable care to ensure the patent was renewed in time. The hearing officer considered that Mr Mitchell failed to react to the reminders from his attorneys, albeit in difficult circumstances, either by misreading the crucial final reminder or by not receiving it because of not making suitable arrangements to do so. The application for restoration was therefore refused.

Full decision O/357/07 PDF document38Kb