Jon Parker

Partner, Intellectual Property

What's your background?

Based in our Dubai office, I joined the firm in April 2016 to develop its MENA IP practice.

I am someone that stumbled into law. For ten years I was a Civil Servant with the UK Intellectual Property Office. My role combined managing the Law Section in the Trade Marks Registry, as well as acting as a Tribunal Member for trademark disputes.

I moved into private practice in 2001, as a trainee trademark and design attorney, with a boutique IP firm based in Oxford. I qualified as a UK and EU Trademark and Design Attorney in 2003. I moved to Dubai in 2006 on secondment and was made a partner two years later.

IP is a fascinating area where the law can be fast changing. You learn something new every day, even after 26 years in the field of trademarks!

Why did you choose to work here?

I had known Gowlings (as it was then) for over 15 years, through working with the teams in Canada and Russia on client matters. It was always a firm which impressed me with its sense of professionalism, but also its people did the work with smiles on their faces.

As an IP lawyer, Gowling WLG, with its impressive IP team, is the brand you want to be representing.

What was the recruitment process like?

The recruitment process was very smooth and professionally done, and, more surprisingly, relatively quick by law firm standards. This was even more impressive due to the fact that the process was running in parallel with the final months leading to the launch of Gowling WLG.

As well as meeting partners from around the business and an interview with board members, as a senior hire, I also undertook psychometric testing. It was a very useful exercise where you learn a lot about yourself and is not as daunting as you may expect.

As well as seeing if I was the right fit for the firm, the firm also made sure that, during the process, I was able to determine whether it was the right fit for me, something often overlooked in many recruitment processes.

What makes Gowling WLG different from other firms?

Gowling WLG has a friendly, inclusive culture where the efforts of all members of the business are recognised. There is a collegiate atmosphere around the firm and a general feeling of togetherness, with everyone looking to pull in the same direction.

What's the most surprising thing you've learned about working here?

One of the heritage firms was not only one of the oldest law firms in the UK, but it also advised on the estate of Princess Diana of Wales.

What do you do outside work?

Read, spend time with my family and friends, walk the dog and explore new countries from our Middle East hub.

"IP is a fascinating area where the law can be fast changing. You learn something new every day, even after 26 years in the field of trademarks!"