Zeinab Mustafa (Portrait)

Zeinab Mustafa

Doctoral Student

Intellectual Property and Competition Law


Areas of Interest: 

Patent Law, International IIP, International and European Law, Conflict of Law and Jurisdiction of Courts

Academic Résumé

Since 2021
Doctoral Student at the Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition

2017 - 2018
Munich Intellectual Property Law Center (MIPLC), Munich
Master of Laws in Intellectual Property and Competition Law

2008 - 2012
Tishreen University, Faculty of Law. Latakia, Syria.
Bachelor of Law

Work Experience

2018 - 2021
IP Specialist
Brandstock Services AG (A Questel Company), Munich

2015 - 2018
Attorney at Law
Syrian Bar Association

2013 - 2015
Trainee Lawyer
Syrian Bar Association

Academic Prizes and Honours

Doctoral Scholarship
Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition

2010 - 2011
Bassel Alassad Certificate for Academic Excellence
Tishreen University, Syria


Syrian Bar Association, Lawyer


Books and Monographs

Unjustified Patent Enforcement (MIPLC Master Thesis Series 2017/18) 2019, Master, MIPLC, 80 pp.

  • This thesis analyses the legal consequences of subsequent patent invalidation
    on infringement actions, contracts and warning letters.
    Patent invalidation has a retroactive effect. The revoked patent should be
    treated as has never exist while it was used against third parties. There is a
    certain legal agreement that, if the patent is invalidated in the course of
    pending trial, the case is dismissed. However, the consequences of a patent
    invalidation on a final judgement differ among the surveyed jurisdictions.
    When the patent has been used as a legal instrument to negotiate a license or
    purchase a patent, in most cases, patent invalidation will not oblige the
    licensor to repay the licensing fees for the time when the patent was in force.
    However, does the licensor have the right to ask for post-invalidation
    royalties. Different jurisdictions give different answers.
    Moreover, the patentee has every right to give third parties notice of his
    exclusive right. This might be done by warning letters. Sending warning letter
    to a primary infringer may be a customary action before filing a law suit.
    However, a conflict arises when the patentee sends warning letters to
    secondary infringers. On the one hand, patent law does not distinguish
    between primary and secondary infringers. On the other hand, sending
    warning letter to secondary actors has less justification since secondary
    infringer will not will to start a legal proceeding against the patentee. They
    simply switch to alternatives. In such a case, the primary infringer’s
    reputation and business might be destroyed.
    After studying the legal solutions in the surveyed jurisdiction, I came to the
    opinion that: to a certain extent the alleged infringer should be able to claim
    back the damages he suffered due to an infringement action which was based
    on defective patent. In case of a contracts, the licensor should lose his right in
    claiming post-invalidation royalties. Warning letters against primary
    infringers should not be actionable, while a no-fault liability should apply when the unjustified warning was sent to secondary infringers, and a per-se prohibition rule should apply for warning the public at large.
  • Available at SSRN


Since Winter 2019
MIPLC Basic and Elective Modules (Tutor)
University of Augsburg