Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Labours of Herakles

Once more into the breech...since my last rant, I've now ascertained a slightly clearer picture of what is likely to be required of future engineering candidates looking to qualify as Avocat Conseil en Propriété Intellectuelle, assuming that the merger goes ahead that is, which, in view of recent diatribes on the CNCPI blog, no longer appears to be a foregone conclusion.

Here's the list as I now understand it, bearing in mind that the waters are still distinctly muddy:

1) Graduate with an engineering, science or equivalent technical, higher education degree
2) Go to Strasbourg and do the CEIPI 1 course (IP law) and pass the exam
3) Go to Strasbourg and do the CEIPI 2 course (general law, obligations, tort, community law, family law, constitutional law, etc) and pass the exam
4) Sit and pass the pre-CAPA (bar school entrance exam) - only 2 attempts allowed, period - current success rate 1 in 5
5) Sit and pass the EQE
6) Sit and pass the CAPA (bar accreditation exam) - pass rate, 1 in 20 ??

All in all, for a scientist who is working in an attorney firm, at least 6 years before even hoping to qualify, more likely 8 to 10 years if the candidate has any form of life outside studying, all of this on top of his/her initial scientific training. Well, hello, I'm the superman(woman) patent attorney you've all been dying to meet :-)

But let those who sit smug in their already qualified armchairs wipe the grin off their faces. The French Bar Association even wants those IP attorneys who are already patent attorneys without Master's Degrees in Law to do an obligatory training course in professional ethics and some form of basic general law just for them to be allowed admittance under the proposed new framework. Now that is something that the CNCPI negotiating committee certainly didn't bargain for, I'll wager.

Why do I get that awkward stomach churning feeling that we have all suddenly been sucked into a parallel world and spat out in Sodom & Gomorrah ?

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