Graduate Opportunity

Trainee Patent Attorney - Engineering, Technology and Physics

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Innovation across the fields of engineering and technology is changing how we live our lives in new and exciting ways. At Mewburn Ellis we are the forefront of this change and we advise and help our clients use intellectual property rights to nurture and protect their innovations, ideas and inventions and deliver them to market.

Engineering, physics, high technology and electronics are particularly fast-moving dynamic growth areas for our business and the team is growing quickly due to our reputation for quality, the expertise of our people and our strong client relationships.

Some of the exciting areas that we work in include: future mobility, automotive, information and communications technology, optics and photonics, medical technology, bioinformatics and exciting emerging technologies such as AI, quantum computing and extended reality. Join us and you could work in these fields with a range of clients from well-known companies such as Hitachi, Unilever and Mitsubishi Electric through to new start-ups and innovation leading universities.

Life at Mewburn Ellis

Life as a trainee Patent Attorney means using your academic background in a stimulating and varied way. Working on innovations and inventions at the forefront of your scientific field.

“Working with different offices ensures that we get to work with technology in a wide range of fields, and get to know everyone really well.” Lucy, Attorney

At Mewburn Ellis we’re collegial, supportive and progressive. With an industry-leading training programme and a rotation scheme that keeps learning fresh and insightful we ensure that you’re set up to develop quickly and learn about the profession from a variety of partners from day one.

“I have found attorneys at Mewburn to be approachable and easy to get along with - they are really great people to learn from.” Dan, Attorney

Trained for Excellence is one of our cornerstone values that permeates our firm, the impact of which is evident at every level, indeed over 90% of our partners trained with us. The training program underpins who we are and our forward-looking, ambitious approach. And as it’s delivered in a structured and focused manner it means that everyone at Mewburn Ellis is able to develop their full potential as a high level attorney.

The role

Reflecting the exciting technology spaces in which our clients operate, you will work closely with colleagues across our engineering, technology and physics practice group but also with attorneys from our life sciences and chemistry practice groups, as well as our solicitors and trade mark team. We take a holistic approach to IP and that will be a theme throughout your training and beyond.

Our training programme is varied sometimes challenging but always rewarding. You will be invested in to grow personally and professionally. There’ll be lots of learning and opportunities to put your electrical and electronics engineering, mechanical engineering, physics or technology background to good use. Our unique rotation scheme gives you the opportunity to work with different mentors and across different areas of engineering, technology and physics allowing you to develop as an attorney and find your niche.

You will sit with a qualified patent attorney and assist them with all parts of their work, including drafting and prosecuting patent applications and advising clients about various aspects of intellectual property law. Essentially we provide you with all the tools you need to become a Trusted Advisor to clients, helping you use your scientific background in a legal context.

What’s in it for you?

  • A competitive financial package
  • Wide range of clients
  • The possibility to work abroad
  • A flexible approach to working hours
  • A diverse, friendly, inclusive culture.

You’ll be well supported to pass your exams as well as develop your all-round skills as a Patent Attorney through our internal and external tutorials and regular input from experienced partners, backed up by feedback on your progress to inform and assist your development. And because we’re merit-based, your career progression is truly in your own hands.

We are a leading, top tier European intellectual property law firm with over 80 qualified Patent Attorneys, in many ways our successful growth story is down to our training and our long-term commitment to the wellbeing of our people. As part of this we have a variety of informal sporting and social events as well as running various charity initiatives.

About you

We look for individuals with a curious, enquiring mind. Excellent communication skills, especially in writing, are vital. General commercial awareness is valuable but no prior knowledge of patent law is required. A strong academic background with a relevant STEM degree (for example Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Mechanical Engineering or Physics) is essential and having an open-minded personable approach to learning will also serve you well!

We’re committed to equal opportunities and welcome a broad diversity of talent to apply.


"We love it when we hear that applicants have watched our webinar with Gradcracker or listened to the podcast and have subsequently made an application. It shows that research has been carried out and that candidates will therefore have a rounded and realistic view of what it takes to make a successful trainee with Mewburn Ellis.

 The intention of the webinar was to give a truthful and transparent insight into the IP profession, detail some of the skills required to be a patent attorney and provide a few real accounts of what life is like on our unique training programme. So if candidates mention they’ve seen it we know that they will have a good base level of understanding about the role, the work, our firm and the profession as a whole."

- Andy Whitlock, Resourcing and Talent Manager.

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How to Apply (If you need any advice before applying please visit the Gradcracker CareerCentre)

Candidates wishing to apply for a graduate vacancy should apply by email to graduate.recruitment@mewburn.com with the following attachments:

Written work

To accompany the form we require the following pieces of written work:

For applications for trainee patent attorney vacancies

  1. A short (no more than 600 words) description of a kitchen implement (and not an electrical appliance such as a toaster or microwave) which explains what the implement does, how it is constructed and works and any clever features it has; and
  2. A single sentence which defines the essential features of a pair of scissors and which distinguishes scissors from a pair of cutting pliers (for example, one might define a “door” as a cover which is positioned by an opening in a wall and which can be moved to vary the extent to which it blocks the opening).
If asked, remember you found this job on Gradcracker!

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Opportunity Overview

  • Ongoing
  • Competitive + benefits
  • All grades
  • Manchester, London, Cambridge and Bristol
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Disciplines accepted...

  • Aerospace
  • Automotive
  • Control & Instrumentation
  • Electrical
  • Electronic
  • Manufacturing
  • Mechanical
  • Mechatronics
  • Physics
  • Product Design
  • Robotics

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