Your ideas give us hope

"Merry Christmas" lettering and patent drawing of a sleigh

From the disclosure document DE 3702519 A1: Collapsible toboggan sledge.

Dear customers,

It's hard to be confident at the end of a year like this. Wars, climate change, economic uncertainty - how can be optimistic in such a situation? With Christmas ahead of us, we are thinking of the many people in Israel, Gaza and Ukraine who are suffering from terror and war. We have expressed our deepest sympathy and solidarity with our Israeli partner office following the Hamas terrorist attack. We will respond to applicants from the war zones in the Middle East and Ukraine with the greatest possible flexibility within the framework of what is legally possible. We all sincerely hope that the situation will change for the better as soon as possible for all those affected.

Portrait photo Eva Schewior

DPMA President Eva Schewior

Despite all our concerns, we would also like to try to look to the future with optimism. Who, if not us? Because we here at the German Patent and Trade Mark Office (DPMA) and many of you, dear users, work in places that give hope: Creativity, a willingness to take risks, the entrepreneurial spirit that underlies many innovations - therein often lies the beginning of something new and promising. By supporting creative people and innovative companies, we promote new business models and solutions to difficult problems. In this way, we also support progress in our society.

There was also a lot of movement at the DPMA last year - especially in terms of personnel: I took over as President in February. In the summer, we bid farewell to our Vice-President Ulrich Deffaa, who retired. He was succeeded at the beginning of December by our former Head of Department 1 "Patents and Utility Models", Maria Skottke-Klein. With Vice-President Bernd Maile, Dr. Skottke-Klein and myself, the office management team is now complete again and we are very much looking forward to continuing to work with you.

The challenges are great: the system of the European Unitary Patent and the Unified Patent Court has been in force since June. This is the biggest change to the international patent system in decades. I am pleased that a new protection option is now available to you as applicants. We at the DPMA have made the best possible preparations for the new regulations, because they also open up new opportunities for you in the national German system. We are convinced that the German patent will perhaps become even more attractive under the new conditions due to its excellent quality and high level of technical expertise both in the examination procedure and in the German court system.

I am very pleased that we have been in an intensive exchange with you, our users, on these topics - in our established DPMAnutzerbeirat (DPMA User Advisory Council), but also in our new DPMAimpuls format. The dialogue and, above all, your suggestions and feedback are of great value to us and I am looking forward to continue this inspiring exchange with you all in the new year. We have also strengthened our communication apart form the above-mentioned dialogue formats: We are very committed to our new intellectual property information mandate towards the public in general and small and medium-sized enterprises in particular, based on Section 26a of the Patent Act

We pushed ahead with another strategically important project this year: the expansion of our office in Jena. Three new patent departments have started work there - and have just moved into additional rented premises. We have succeeded in recruiting excellently qualified staff. The decision to establish a second mainstay for patent examination alongside Munich has already paid off. And you as applicants will also benefit from this.

Dear customers, we all know that the budget situation in the coming year will not allow the investments we would like to see in all areas. However, we are convinced that we will continue to make progress on many important tasks in 2024. In any case, we will do our utmost to provide you with the best possible support. Because you and your creative ideas are more important now than ever.

We wish you a Merry Christmas, a Happy New Year - and stay innovative!

Yours, Eva Schewior

Picture 1: DPMA, Picture 2: Laura Thiesbrummel

Last updated: 19 December 2023