Betson Medical (Ireland) Limited v. Comptroller General of Patents, High Court of Justice, Patents Court, London, UK, 31 March 2010, Case No.  EWHC 687 (Pat)
The Patents Court has rejected Betson Medical’s appeal of the decision of the UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) to reject Betson Medical’s application to restore EP (UK) 0 957 878 following non-payment of a renewal fee.
Betson Medical argued that the UK IPO had applied too strict test and ought to have concluded that Mr Betson and Betson Medical did take reasonable care to see that the renewal fee was paid on time. Mr Betson had made strenuous efforts to secure funding from investors and the only funds he did have were used to cover his living expenses.
Mr Justice Kitchin had no doubt that Mr Betson was indeed facing severe financial difficulties at the time the renewal fee was due and he did make strenuous efforts to secure funding in order to exploit his invention commercially and pay the relevant renewal fee. However, the evidence did not establish that Mr Betson took reasonable care to see that the limited sum necessary to secure the renewal of the patent was paid on time and so the appeal had to be dismissed.