Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, Innovation and Patent Center (IPC)

Apply for approval of the patent law firm

If you want to set up a patent law firm in the legal form of a GmbH, you must apply for admission as a patent law firm.

Important notes


  • It must be a limited liability company whose business purpose is to provide advice and representation in the above matters.
  • The company may not be involved in mergers for joint professional practice.
  • Society must be managed responsibly by patent attorneys.
  • The management and the end of the company must exclusively be members of the Chamber of Patent Attorneys, lawyers, tax advisors, tax agents, auditors and chartered accountants. In addition, members of the patent attorney profession from certain member states of the European Union or other states may be part of the company. These must be professionally active in the patent law firm.
  • The majority of the managing directors and, if applicable, authorized signatories and authorized persons for the entire business operation must be patent attorneys.
  • The patent attorneys must hold the majority of the shares and voting rights.
  • The independence of the patent attorneys who work as managing directors, authorized signatories or authorized representatives must be guaranteed.
  • Professional liability insurance with a minimum insured sum of 2.5 million euros per insured event must have been taken out or a provisional confirmation of cover must be available. The maximum annual benefit for all damage caused in one insurance year must be at least four times the minimum sum insured.
  • The name of the company must contain the designation "Patentanwaltsgesellschaft".

Documents required

  • Completed application form, with attachments if necessary
  • Copy of the Articles of Association or certified copy
  • Certificates of approval of the companies, managing directors, authorized signatories and authorized representatives in certified copies
  • Proof of professional liability insurance or a provisional cover note in the original

Please note

In addition to the GmbH, you can also set up partner companies, companies under civil law, etc. Although these must also be based on the professional requirements (in particular Section 52a Patentanwaltsordnung), they do not require approval by the competent authority.



Procedure & Fees


  • You must submit the application for admission of the patent law firm to the competent authority.
  • You can obtain the necessary application form from the competent authority.
  • The Chamber of Patent Attorneys checks whether all the requirements for admission are met.
  • If the test result is positive, you will receive a certificate of approval from the patent law firm.
  • The admission as a patent law firm becomes effective when the certificate is issued.

Processing time

The approval process is usually completed within two months of the application being submitted.


The admission fee is EUR 1,200

Legal notes

Legal remedies

Please inquire about any legal remedies at the Chamber of Patent Attorneys.

Legal basis

Sections 3 and 4 of the Patent Attorney Code (PAO)

Section 52a Patent Attorney Code (PAO)

§§ 52c - 52m Patent Attorney Code (PAO)

Downloads & Links

Links on the Internet

Service description

If you want to set up a patent law firm in the legal form of a GmbH, you must apply for admission as a patent law firm.
Like patent attorneys, the partners of a patent law firm may offer the following activities:

  • Advice on inventions, trademarks, design, know-how, variety protection and the like
  • Registration of all industrial property rights
  • Prosecution of infringements of property rights (unless representation by lawyers is required)
  • Representation before the German Patent and Trademark Office, Federal Patent Court, Federal Plant Variety Office and other international authorities for the protection of industrial property
  • Representation before the Federal Court of Justice in nullity proceedings

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Address and contact information


Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, Innovation and Patent Center (IPC)
Adolphsplatz 1 20457 Hamburg

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Opening hours

Mon-Fri 9am-2pm

Facility info

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Public transport

U3 / buses X3 / X35 / 3/4/5/6/16/17/19/31/37 town hall

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