Aerotel/Macrossan [2006] EWCA Civ 1371 (patentability)

Court of Appeal judgment (about 40 pages) on two cases relating to the exclusion from patentability of business methods or software "as such". The lower courts had found both inventions to be excluded from patentability; Aerotel's was a method for charging for telephone calls and Macrossan's was a method for preparing company registration documents. The Court of Appeal reversed the Aerotel decision, finding that a new way of combining existing equipment in order to achieve the technical effect of an electronic communication was patentable. It dismissed the Macrossan appeal, holding that the invention was both a business method and software as such. The judgment includes a wide-ranging review of relevant case law.

Update, February 2007: The House of Lords has refused Macrossan's application for leave to appeal. Macrossan's website has a list of documents related to the case.

For further information or advice please contact Franck Latrémolière.

Filed under UK courts.

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