Hutchinson IP is a thriving IP practice based in Southport, Merseyside.  Established in 2011, the practice has grown massively and we now act for more than 250 clients on over 1200 matters.  These new positions have been created to enable us to meet our ever-increasing workload and to enable us to continue to provide the quality, personal service that our clients deserve.


We represent all types of clients, ranging from tech start-ups through to established manufacturing businesses and multinational corporations.  That said, many of our clients are based in and around the north west area and we need someone with excellent communication skills and someone who enjoys direct client contact.


Southport is a thriving seaside town located on the stunning Sefton coast.  Southport has a lot to offer for families and those wishing to relocate, and further details can be found at and  Our office is located in Hoghton St, the main business area of the town, surrounded by architects, accountants, solicitors and other professional services firms.  The office is just a few hundred metres from Southport Rail Station, which has direct lines to Liverpool (45 minutes), Wigan (30 minutes), Bolton (67 minutes) and Manchester (79 minutes).  By car, the Office is just 20 minutes from J3 of the M58 or the end of the M62 and just 25 minutes from J1 of the M65 or J29 of the M6.  Contract parking (typically £50-£100 per month) can be arranged in and around Hoghton St.



  • CPA and/or EPA (or thereabouts!)
  • Mechanical, engineering, materials or electronics


The range of work on offer is diverse, including a large amount of original patent drafting, prosecution and portfolio management, as well as some contentious IP work.  We regularly carry out IP audits, pre-filing patentability searches, conduct opinion work, handle entitlement disputes, use the UKIPO Opinions service and do straw man work, which sometimes involves attending EPO Hearings. We are also regularly instructed in relation to Design Right, Copyright and VERO disputes, which involves working with IP barristers and solicitors in IPEC litigation.  Thus, the depth and breadth of work and experience on offer is excellent, and would suit someone who is keen to learn and develop their skills as an attorney.  You will also need to keep up-to-date with developments in IP law and will be expected to become involved in our CPD programme, which we run in conjunction with other IP firms.

Don’t be fooled by the firm’s “out-of-town” location: this is a very established and rapidly-growing IP practice with an already large and varied caseload.  You will be given a full docket of work from day 1, with direct client contact and real responsibility.  There will be plenty of opportunity for both business and personal career development here!


We need someone with a degree in an engineering, mechanical, electrical, or electronic subject and who has recently qualified as a UK and/or European patent attorney.  Candidates qualified as a UK Patent Attorney or a European Patent Attorney only will be given training and support to get them through the relevant exams.  

We also welcome applications from candidates with passes in some, but not all, of the UK and/or EPO final exams.

There will be a lot of direct client contact, so we need someone who enjoys meeting with clients and getting to understand their business.  The ideal candidate will be able to grasp complex commercial situations quickly and be able to develop an IP strategy that meets the client’s needs with the minimum cost and complexity.  

We operate an established, “paperless” office and so strong IT skills are essential.  You will be expected to be very familiar with MS Office applications and feel comfortable working in a paperless environment.  Full training and support will be provided on our records, accounts and billing systems.


This is a full-time position, based in our Southport office and a competitive salary commensurate with experience and qualifications is on offer.  


Please e-mail your CV, or telephone (01704 320 084) Tom Hutchinson at any time, in strictest confidence, to discuss the role in greater detail.



We are not actively recruiting new trainees or graduates at the present time.  

However, if you would like to make a speculative application for us to keep on file for later, then please feel free to do so.

What we are looking for are candidates with a minimum 2:1 degree in a “STEM” subject (ideally an engineering or “mixed”/”generalist” discipline) and who have a minimum of an A or A* at GCSE (or equivalent) in English and Science(s).  Candidates must also have experience of public speaking/written publication demonstrating an ability to teach or convey, to laypeople, complex issues.  Any previous experience in intellectual property/law would be a bonus.

All employees must be competent in Windows 10 & Office 365 applications and must be able to touch type.  Outstanding English grammar is essential, and some knowledge of French & German (the papers of the European patent examinations are set in a mixture of EN, FR & DE, and these are the three official languages of the EPO) would be beneficial.

Trainees work under the direct supervision of a Chartered Patent Attorney and are supervised in the full range of work of a patent attorney.  This includes, inter alia: meeting clients and advising on patentability and IP matters generally; drafting, filing and “prosecuting” patent and registered design applications; maintaining IP portfolios; and providing advice in the event of IP disputes arising.  As only qualified attorneys are able to provide “restricted activities”, the trainee will be very closely-supervised and all work will need to be checked by a qualified person prior to dispatch.  Besides carrying out “professional” work, the successful candidate will need to: take responsibility for docketing and monitoring deadlines; deal with invoicing and credit control; take an active role in customer service and marketing activities; and keep abreast of developments in IP law.  Candidates also need the ability to self-study and problem-solve; prioritise work and work to tight deadlines; pay excellent attention to detail; and be dedicated and ambitious.

We view taking on trainees as a long-term investment in the business, so we expect successful candidates to undertake a programme of intensive self-study to learn the job and eventually qualify as a UK & European Patent & Design Attorney.  Training and support will be provided via a mixture of self-study, supervised one-the-job training, CPD & external tutorials.

We only have positions available for full-time employment (business hours) at our Southport office.  Competitive salaries commensurate with experience and qualifications are on offer.  


Please e-mail your CV, or telephone (01704 320 084) Tom Hutchinson at any time, in strictest confidence, to discuss the role in greater detail.