Instead of resolving Intellectual Property disputes in open court, Niall actively encourages parties to consider Alternative Dispute Resolution (“ADR“). For disputes involving Intellectual Property, ADR offers two methods:-

Arbitration:  This is a process whereby parties to a dispute agree to submit their dispute to an arbitrator, who will render a binding and enforceable decision. The advantage of arbitration is that the parties have a degree of flexibility in determining the procedure and management of the arbitration and also who will arbitrate the dispute. A further significant advantage of arbitration is that, unlike litigation in open court, arbitrations are heard in private.

The leading arbitration provider for Intellectual Property disputes is the World Intellectual Property Organization.

Mediation: This is a process which allows two or more parties to a dispute to negotiate an amicable resolution with the assistance of an independent and neutral mediator.  Notably, it is not the role of a mediator to find in favour of any of the parties to the dispute. Helpfully, the European Union Intellectual Property Office, the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office and the World Intellectual Property Organization all offer a mediation service.

Níall Tierney is a signatory to the World Intellectual Property Organization ‘Mediation Pledge’ and can therefore help in resolving disputes with other parties on an amicable basis.

Niall Tierney has experience in both Arbitration and Mediation, including actively assisting clients before the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office Mediation division. If you are involved in an Intellectual Property dispute and would like to consider ADR,  please contact us for further advice and assistance.