Back to careers

Trainee Patent Attorney

Name: Mohammed Khimji
Job Title: Trainee Patent Attorney
University: University of Warwick
Degree: Chemistry

Mohammed Khimji

Why did you choose a job in this profession?

My journey towards a career in patent law began during my second year of university, where I was inspired by an alumnus attorney’s talk at a university careers event. Having a passion for science, and particularly the communication of it, I was drawn to the idea of applying my technical knowledge outside the laboratory.

What appealed to me about being a patent attorney was the opportunity to continuously learn about new scientific developments across various disciplines, all while working in a commercial setting and collaborating with a diverse range of clients to protect and enforce their intellectual property.

What does a typical day look like?

A typical day at the office is quite diverse, offering a mix of tasks centred around helping our clients to protect and enforce their intellectual property. Some typical tasks include:

  • Patent drafting: This involves initially reviewing information that a client has provided about their invention and/or meeting with the client to discuss it. The aim here is to work out what is at the “heart” of the invention and to determine whether it appears patentable over what is already known by the client to be in the public domain. The next step involves drafting a comprehensive patent application, including clear and precise patent claims that define the subject matter for which protection is sought.
  • Patent searching: Before deciding to pursue a patent application for their invention, clients may ask us to perform prior art searches to gauge the novelty and inventiveness of their invention. This involves conducting searches of various patent registers and other sources.
  • Patent prosecution: This involves reviewing examination reports and relevant prior art documents which have been raised by patent offices around the world, and formulating responses to address objections raised in the reports to progress our clients’ patent applications through to grant.
  • Opposition: This involves assisting clients to oppose granted patents. This requires collating evidence and formulating persuasive arguments to challenge the validity of a granted patent.
  • Design work: In addition to patents, a typical day may also find you working with clients to help them protect and enforce their design rights.

As a trainee at Wilson Gunn, you will work closely with a Partner of the firm, so there is always somebody available to provide advice and help you develop in your role.

How does Wilson Gunn provide support with exam preparation?

As a trainee, a fundamental aspect of my role involves studying for and passing a series of exams to become both a qualified UK and European patent attorney. Whilst the exams are challenging and require significant preparation outside of working hours, Wilson Gunn is committed to supporting its trainees throughout this process.

Trainees are given the opportunity to attend specialised training courses tailored to exam preparation and are granted access to a wealth of study materials to provide the best chance of passing the exams. Additionally, attorneys at the firm are approachable and happy to answer any questions that may arise.

Upon joining Wilson Gunn, I also quickly discovered the supportive network of fellow trainees and have greatly benefitted from my more experienced peers, who have generously shared their insights and provided invaluable guidance and support during my exam preparation journey.

If you are interested in a career as a patent attorney at Wilson Gunn, click here to see our latest graduate job opportunities.

Wilson Gunn