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LLM Intellectual Property Law

An LLM Intellectual Property Law degree will allow you to develop a sophisticated understanding and ability to analyse the intellectual property law framework.

Patents, brands and trademarks play immovable roles in the modern knowledge economy. Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) are key to the success of new inventions and products for businesses. A postgraduate qualification in IP will cover problems facing the patent/brand/trademarks framework.

You will gain an appreciation of the economic/social influences and impact of IP, such as the WTO/TRIPS Agreement, and IP’s place in relation to other areas of law like business, commercial, corporate, human rights, EU and International.

Professionals within IP can be involved in cases for a hugely diverse cases, from the patenting of drugs to mechanical and biotechnological inventions. In the legal sector, a technical background can be a big advantage in this particular field.

Core modules

Module choice will vary according to each institution; however, an LLM in this specialist area will tend to cover subjects such as:

  • Trademark law and policy
  • Brands law and policy
  • Copyright and designs
  • Competition law
  • European, international and comparative law context
  • Unfair competition law.

Course structure

The majority of LLM Intellectual Property courses will require that you choose and complete a select number of mandatory and optional modules/credits, attending various lectures and small seminars group sessions. Assessment is through a combination of examinations and or essays and a dissertation, or one or two research papers depending on the provider.

There are over ten institutions in the UK that run Master of Laws degrees for IP. The University of Liverpool offers an online course with 100% online assessment and no requirements to attend campus.

Entry requirements for LLM Intellectual Property Law

You will need a minimum of a 2:2 in a law degree (or the equivalent), though some institutions may specify a 2:1. Non-law graduates who have also completed the GDL (Graduate Diploma in Law) can also be eligible, as well as individuals with relevant professional experience.

By Jos Weale, Editor,