Set up in 2014, Vault is the antidote to traditional law firms. Vault’s core values are based on your needs, not ours. You will find our approach totally flexible - your commercial objectives are our priority, and we promise never to use sleep-inducing boilerplate letters. Every piece of advice is tailored to you whether you are a startup or a large corporate.
We may be a small business ourselves, but this provides us with flexibility and agility, making us stand out in the IP market. We match this agility with a degree of training and experience to rival our larger competitors, which is why we are trusted by our clients, who return to us time and time again.
Our professional fees are highly competitive and flexible to suit you. The tools we use - secure cloud computing and a fully paperless office - mean that our overheads are rock bottom. This doesn’t mean we compromise on quality (our deadline monitoring systems and client file storage are secure and reliable), it means we’re working smarter for you.
These tools also give you access to your portfolio 24/7. You will receive a dedicated, secure client login to enable you to monitor and download your IP portfolio whenever you want.
We aim to work with you, sharing our experience and knowledge to ensure your intellectual property is secure and protected now and for the future of your business.
Senior Patent Attorney
Amy Bishton is a Chartered and European patent attorney with a first class honours degree in Physics from the University of Reading. Since joining the profession over 10 years ago, and having worked with start-ups, SMEs and multinational businesses, Amy has acquired a wide range of technological expertise across the computing and engineering fields. Her areas of expertise include medical devices and medical imaging, telecoms, encryption and authentication systems, industrial control systems, web-based applications and content delivery, and consumer electronics with particular emphasis on user interfaces, audio and visual technologies, battery technology, gamification and mobile applications. Amy is particularly interested in ‘Digital Health’ technologies and the use of ‘big data’ in the healthcare sector.
Amy’s experience in software and computer-implemented innovation has allowed her to provide opinions on software patentability for the UK and Europe. Her experience encompasses freedom-to-operate projects, validity opinions, portfolio management and prosecution strategy, patent transactions, competitor monitoring and patent enforcement.
DIRECTOR - TRADE MARKS
Michelle Bishton is a Chartered Trade Mark Attorney, qualified to act before the UK and European Intellectual Property Offices. She has an honours degree in Law and a Masters degree in Intellectual Property. After joining the profession as a graduate she has worked for 3 large UK firms of IP attorneys and has over 20 years' experience in the profession.
During her time in the profession, Michelle has worked for a wide range of clients from individuals to multi-national corporations. She has been fortunate to work for clients in a multitude of different industries ranging from mining, lubricants, lighting, agriculture and construction to consumer electronics, toys, hair care, bathroom products, clothing and food. In addition to searching and filing trade mark applications in the UK and overseas, Michelle also has a great deal of experience in filing and defending oppositions, preparing co-existence agreements and managing worldwide assignment and licence recordal programs.
Serena graduated with a 2:1 in media and cultural studies, where she explored in great depth the complex relationship and influence between media and society.
She had a successful career in planning and managing advertising campaigns for a variety of advertising agencies; her clients ranged from International fashion brands to West End theatre shows to a Police force. Serena has been behind campaigns that have received media attention, been nominated for, as well as won an industry award.
Moving on from media planning, Serena successfully continued with project and account management positions.
Serena is the backbone of the Vault team. Utilising her sound account, client and office management skills, she started in the multi-faceted role of PA to both Michelle and Phil. Serena passed the Introductory Patent Administrator Course (IPAC) with distinction in 2019, making her Vault IP’s first paralegal. Serena is currently working towards qualification as a trade mark paralegal.
Trade mark attorney
Jane Kennedy is a Trade Mark Attorney with an LLB in Law and a post graduate Diploma in Legal Practice. After joining the profession as a graduate, Jane has worked in-house in the legal department for a multinational car rental company and in private practice for a large UK firm of patent and Trade Mark attorneys, and has over 12 years of experience working in the profession.
During her time in the profession, Jane has worked with a wide range of clients from start-ups and SMEs to large and multi-national corporations, spanning various different sectors. Jane provides commercial and practical advice in relation to all areas of Trade Mark law including but not limited to: clearing Marks for use and registration; preparation and filing of Trade Marks, in the UK and overseas; and prosecution of Trade Mark applications before the UKIPO, EUIPO, and WIPO. In addition, Jane has experience of dealing with contentious matters including preparation of filing and defending oppositions in the UK and EU. With an eye for detail, Jane is experienced in reviewing, drafting and negotiating documents including Undertakings and Co-existence agreements. Jane enjoys portfolio management in terms of recordal of worldwide assignment programs.
Director - patents & designs
Phil Sanger is a Chartered and European Patent Attorney, a European Designs Attorney and Patent Attorney Litigator. He has a first class master’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Bath and worked as an engineer for nearly 4 years before joining the patent attorney profession. After joining the profession as a graduate, Phil worked for 9 years for a highly regarded large UK firm of IP attorneys before setting up Vault IP in 2014.
Phil has a passion for engineering, and in particular innovation in the engineering sector. As an attorney he has worked for companies ranging from large multinationals to SMEs and sole inventors. Phil has worked in, and is comfortable with all areas of mechanical engineering due to his academic and professional background, including manufacturing engineering, aerospace, automotive, agricultural equipment and medical engineering. Specific experience includes composite manufacture and testing, civil aircraft structures, aircraft control surface actuation, gas turbines, surgical products, medical pump technology, agricultural equipment and actuators and simulators for a variety of applications.
Senior patent attorney
Jennifer Unsworth is a Chartered and European Patent Attorney and a European Designs Attorney. She has an honours degree in medical materials science and a PhD in cartilage tissue engineering, both from the University of Nottingham. Prior to joining the patent attorney profession, Jennifer worked as a researcher for a multinational medical device company and held technology transfer positions at the Universities of Nottingham and York and Health and Social Care Northern Ireland. In these positions, Jennifer developed an interest in the role of intellectual property rights in the development and commercialisation of technology.
During her 9 years as an attorney, Jennifer has worked for a range of clients, including individual inventors, small & medium size businesses, academic institutions and multinational companies. As a Fellow of The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining, Jennifer applies her knowledge of materials science and engineering to inventions across a broad range of technology sectors, including aerospace, automotive, medical devices and home improvements.
Sabrina Armitage is a critical cog in our Patents team, working as a PA to our Senior Patent Attorneys, Jen and Amy. She is responsible for the smooth day to day running of the team, ensuring, amongst other duties, that application deadlines are met and our clients are kept abreast of any updates.
Sabrina has a strong background in the legal sector having previously worked for a Solicitor’s firm in Scotland. Her interest in the legal world was sparked on completion of her Business & Administration QCF levels 2 and 3, where instead of selecting a business degree she chose to pursue one in English and Welsh law. Sabrina has been simultaneously studying for her bachelor’s degree whilst working and will complete it later this year.