Tim Crummenerl is set to take up his new position as a judge at the Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe on 1 April. Crummenerl will move from the Regional Court Düsseldorf to the 10th Civil Senate, which is Germany’s highest instance for patent infringement proceedings. However, the Düsseldorf court has not yet appointed a successor.
29 March 2021 by Konstanze Richter
Tim Crummenerl, born in 1970, was until recently the presiding judge of the 4a Civil Chamber at the Regional Court Düsseldorf, which he joined in 1999. However, his future workplace at the Federal Court of Justice in Karlsruhe is not unknown to him.
In 2005, the Regional Court seconded Crummenerl to the Patent Senate of the Federal Court of Justice for three years, to work as a research assistant. After returning to Düsseldorf in 2009, he then assumed the position of presiding judge of Civil Chamber 4a. This is one of the three patent chambers of the court of first instance.
Crummenerl is well-known on the patent scene, having handed down several judgments on standard essential patents (SEPs). Prominent examples include the MPEG LA case against Huawei and ZTE, the dispute between IPCom/Fipa and HTC, and the high-profile Sisvel vs. Haier case. In the latter dispute, the competition law senate of the Federal Court of Justice recently issued two leading decisions on FRAND cases in Germany.
The 10th Civil Senate at the Federal Court of Justice is Germany’s highest instance for patent infringement proceedings.
Furthermore, the senate is also the appeal instance for patent revocation cases. It thus combines two separate strands of the German bifurcation system. The senate regularly sets important precedents in German and European patent law.
The Judges Election Committee in Germany appointed Tim Crummenerl in his new post in July 2020. Once again, the Düsseldorf District Court is sending a patent law specialist to Germany’s highest civil and criminal court.
Klaus Grabinski last moved from the Düsseldorf Regional Court to the patent senate in Karlsruhe in 2009, where he is now deputy chairman.
One of the best-known German patent judges is long-standing presiding judge of the 10th Civil Senate, Peter Meier-Beck. He moved from the Düsseldorf Regional Court in 2010, and was appointed a judge at the Cartel Senate in 2019. Klaus Bacher then succeeded Meier-Beck as chairman of the patent senate of the Federal Court of Justice.
The Regional Court Düsseldorf has not yet appointed a successor to the position of presiding judge of the 4a Civil Chamber. The position remains vacant for the duration of the ongoing application process. For the time being, Tim Crummenerl’s deputy Berenice Thom will head the chamber.