CORRUPTION IN EPO & TOPIĆ IP D.O.O.
By: Dr. Roy Schestowitz
As the website of Topić IP d.o.o. informs us, he is a “doyen of Intellectual Property in the region” and “internationally renowned as a dedicated officer of SIPO, EPO, WIPO, as well as private practitioner”. The other members of the Topić IP crew listed on the company website are Dr Ana Topić, Ivana Jurin Puhalo and Dr Krešimir Pučaj. According to the website both Ana Topić and Ivana Jurin Puhalo are qualified European and Croatian trademark attorneys.
QUALIFIED EU & CRO PATENT ATTORNEY
But if you’re going to operate a proper one-stop IP consultancy you’ll also need someone with expertise in the area of patents. So move over and make room for Dr Krešimir Pučaj who – so the website tells us – is a “qualified European and Croatian patent attorney”.
However, there’s just one small problem with Dr Krešimir Pučaj. He may well be “a qualified European patent attorney” but – according to the EPO’s own Official Journal (OJ) – his name was deleted from the register in February 2017 and there is no record of any subsequent reinstatement.
The information published in the EPO OJ doesn’t tell us whether this deletion was voluntarily requested or whether it was a disciplinary consequence of the non-payment of the annual subscription fee required by Article 6 of the “Regulation on the establishment of an institute of professional representatives before the European Patent Office”
DOYEN OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY IN THE REGION
Whatever the circumstances leading to the deletion may have been, the fact remains that poor old Krešimir no longer seems to be on the list of professional representatives maintained by the EPO. In other words, his capacity to represent clients before the EPO is in doubt. But no need to worry too much about that. There is someone else to step into the breach, no less a person than the self-styled “doyen of Intellectual Property in the region”, the one and only Željko Topić, formerly known as mr. sc. dipl. oec. Željko Topić, M.B.A., but now sporting the newly acquired title of “European Patent Attorney”.
This seems like good news indeed for the clients of Topić IP d.o.o. It was common knowledge that Željko knew a thing or two about trademarks but it seems that he also put his time at the EPO to good use to gain some additional expertise in the area of patents.
Let’s just hope that no interfering busy-bodies start asking how exactly the illustrious MBA from Banja Luka acquired his claim to be a European Patent Attorney. Because if they do, it just might just open a whole new can of worms requiring another official whitewash by the EPO’s investigative unit. Stay tuned for the next instalment where we take a look at the small print of the EPC to find out what exactly is going on here.