Congratulations to Boult Wade Tennant’s Jade Watt, who was recently awarded the UK drafting prize for the highest mark in the UK 2020 drafting exam (FD2). This follows Jade’s success in the amendments paper of 2019, for which she obtained the prize for the highest mark.

Jade’s achievement follows a long line of success for Boult Wade Tennant’s candidates winning the UK drafting prize. Previously, Joanna Peak, Jo Pelly, Matthew Spencer and Daniel Weston were also awarded this prize. This means that out of 16 years of UK exams, a Boult Wade Tennant trainee has scooped up the prize 5 times during this period which is testament to the variety of drafting work that our trainees receive, as well as the on-the-job tuition from Attorneys with many years of drafting experience. Our Attorneys who have been awarded the drafting prize have worked in different fields, including Hi-Tech, Chemistry, and Biotechnology.

Winning an award in 2020 is particularly impressive given that the UK exam format was very different to previous years. As we are all aware, 2020 proved to be quite a challenging year, with COVID-19 changing many of the ways in which we work and live. On top of the challenges brought about by the many lockdowns, and the new system of working from home, exam candidates also had to contend with being the first year of candidates to sit the UK patent law exams online.

Candidates were given the option to sit the exams at home, or for those whose firms allowed it, in the office. Rather than being provided with a printed copy of the paper and an abundance of lined paper, 2020 saw the paper being downloadable upon start of the examination time, after which the paper could then be printed. The candidates had to type their answers into a word document, and submit their answer as a PDF by the end of the exam time, under the supervision of several invigilators watching via Zoom. The drafting exam also required candidates to annotate the drawings by hand, and then to scan these into a PDF document, and subsequently upload the PDF document as part of their answer.

Despite the new format of the exams, and the other challenges faced over 2020, Boult Wade Tennant’s trainees have achieved good results in the 2020 UK exams, with two candidates qualifying as UK Patent Attorneys. Congratulations to all our successful candidates.