IPReg is no longer applying a 25% cap on the maximum number of hours that count towards overall CPD for certain “non-interactive” activities. For example, where previously watching a recording of a webinar as opposed to watching it live was deemed a capped activity, from now on an attorney will be entitled to claim 100% of the time spent watching the webinar regardless of whether it was live or not.
IPReg considers that the waiver of this cap will help to ensure that attorneys undertake CPD activities that are relevant to them and their clients rather than activities that may be less relevant but count for more CPD hours. IPReg wants to ensure that its rules around CPD do not create a perverse incentive for attorneys to participate in or undertake CPD activities which are not providing value to them or their practice, simply because they count for more hours than other more valuable or relevant activities.
IP Inclusive also expressed a concern that such restrictions can unintentionally disadvantage patent and trade mark attorneys who – for medical reasons, or in order to care for children or other dependents – work part-time, as well as those who have difficulty accessing training which involves significant travel.
All of this is clearly at odds with the purpose of a CPD programme which is designed to ensure that attorneys are continuing to stretch and develop in the areas that will most benefit their practice and therefore best serve their clients.
Please see the CPD Activities webpage for information on the types of activities normally likely to automatically count as CPD.