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  • Name: Elizabeth Elliott
  • Job Title: Technical Assistant
  • Location: London
  • University: Manchester
  • Degree: Physics

I was initially drawn to studying Physics because of its applicability to the real-world. However, during my degree, I realised that while I wanted a career that would enable me to keep in touch with science, I did not want to restrict myself to increasingly narrow areas of study. I have found that training as a patent attorney has allowed me to do exactly this. Working in patents combines science, problem solving and some creativity.

Whilst at university I undertook three internships with three different firms, two in London and one in Dubai. These gave me a great insight into the day to day work of a patent attorney in both small and large firms and I was immediately sure that it was a career path I wanted to follow.

I joined Maucher Jenkins in September 2015 as a Technical Assistant and I have greatly enjoyed my time at the firm so far. The work is by no means straight forward but it is interesting and rewarding.

Since starting at the firm, I have worked with both small and large clients on a variety of cases, with a focus on telecommunications. I have been involved in drafting and prosecuting patent applications and have attended meetings with clients and inventors.

Much of my training is on-the-job and from the start I was entrusted with my own cases to work on. At first, this seemed daunting, but my work is supervised by partners who give me guidance and teaching along the way. The friendly, relaxed atmosphere of Maucher Jenkins provides a brilliant environment in which to learn and develop. Other trainees, associates and partners are always happy to help with any queries I have.

This Autumn, I will study the QMUL Certificate in Intellectual Property Law. This will provide me with exemption from the UK Foundation exams and a great opportunity to broaden my knowledge and meet other trainees in the profession.

The learning curve is steep, and the formal, legal aspects of the job take some getting used to, but these challenges are what make the job interesting. If you enjoy challenges, have strong analytic skills and a keen eye for detail, I would recommend a career in patent law. It has allowed me to keep in touch with science and modern technologies, while doing something completely different to anything I have done before.

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