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Changes to be Made to UK Patents Rules

The UK Intellectual Property Office has announced that various changes will be made to the Patents Rules, following conclusion of a public consultation. The Government 's response to the consultation which outlines the changes to be introduced can be found here. The changes are generally aimed at relaxing formalities and clarifying procedures. One particular change of note which will impact on claims allowable in UK patents is that the omnibus claim (which is used typically to specifically protect an embodiment substantially as described in the drawings) is to be prohibited except where absolutely essential. The Government intends to take steps to implement the changes to the Patents Rules at the next available opportunity.