Safetray inventor featured in Daily Record article

Safetray is in good company, alongside other Scottish inventions such as TV and penicillin.

Chris Clements, Daily Record, 12th March 2014

"John Logie Baird will be turing in his grave

EU to hike costs for innovators

The nation that gave the world TV, penicillin and telephones could see its inventors of the fututre stymied by new EU laws.

Scottish inventors will be hit with rising costs to protect their creations if a new patent law goes through Parliament. Lawyers have warned that the Intellectual Property Bill - part of a move to mesh with the EU's new Unitary Patent Court - may see Scottish courts stripped of powers to rule on patent cases.

The Court of Session in Edinburgh has jurisdiction over patents for Scottish inventors. But under the law - to be debated in the House of Commons today - inventors may have to travel to England or abroad to leagally protect their designs from copycats.

Alison Grieve, who invented Safetray, used by hospitality firms, said inventors must be able to litigate in Scottish courts. The Edinburgh businesswoman warned that firms will take a financial hit if the Bill is not amended.

She said: "If we have to go down south to litigate, it does put added pressure on finances. I can forsee problems for companies that have gone to great lengths to negotiate and argue that their contracts are under Scots law, only to find that they have to travel to England."

Under the EU's Unitary Patent Court deal, the UK would be allowed up to four courts to decide on intellectual property disputes. But the Law Society of Scotland fear that none of them will be in Scotland.

Scottish lawyers have called for the three jurisdictions in the UK - England and Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland - to each have a patent court under the new system.

Lawyer Gill Grassie said: "What we're aiming to achieve is to have a guarantee in place that one of the courts would be situated in Scotland, effectively maintaining the status quo."

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Posted on March 13, 2014 .