European Patent Attorney: an old profession?

Over on Linkedin somebody asked the question: How many registered patent attorneys are actually working? This got me thinking about the situation in Europe.

As of Feb 2008 there were just under 9000 European Patent Attorneys. However, 40% of those were “grandfathered in“, i.e. were practising national attorneys in 1977/1978.

If you estimate the youngest practising attorney in 1977/78 to be 25 years old (the average is probably around 30), this means that 40% of European Patent Attorneys are over 57 years old.

How many of these are still working? How many will retire in the next 5 years or so? Interesting questions.

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