IP boutique bags A&O IP chief

IP firm Rouse Legal has boosted its partnership with the hire of the head of Allen & Overy‘s intellectual property group.

Catriona Smith joins Rouse Legal at the start of next week after spending more than 15 years as a partner at A&O. Her practice has focused on UK IP and IT litigation and has experience acting for clients in pharmaceutical and trade mark disputes. She retired from the A&O partnership at the end of April.

Smith said: “I have had a long and successful career at A&O and am very much looking forward to the fresh and stimulating challenges which my new role will bring. Moving to Rouse gives me a unique opportunity to join a team with a broader mix of IP disciplines, which I think will bring perspective to my work.”

Smith began her career at Clifford Chance in 1982, leaving for A&O in 1989, where she became a partner three years later.

Last month A&O’s IP department was criticized by Mr Justice Floyd for submitting £5.2m in costs after winning a patent case for client Research In Motion against Visto.

This year A&O made up 28 partners worldwide, but none of them were in the IP litigation group.