The Legal 500

Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

Brodies LLP

Work 0131 228 3777
Fax 0131 228 3878

Robert Buchan

Work 0131 656 0078
Brodies LLP

Work Department

Intellectual property, technology and IT.


Robert has extensive experience in dealing with and resolving all types of IP, IT and technology related disputes with particular in-depth expertise in luxury brands, food and drink, fashion, oil and gas technologies, and pharmaceuticals. He also has extensive experience in representing clients in the Court of Session in a wide variety of high-profile and complex matters, including patent infringement and validity disputes, trade mark actions (including counterfeit and parallel imported goods), and copyright and design right disputes. Robert also provides brand management and reputation advise both on line and in the real world to many leading household brands. Robert also advises on IT related disputes involving software and website development as well as major business critical IT or e-business projects. Robert has also successfully used mediation and arbitration to resolve IP and IT disputes. He has experience in dealing with domain name disputes, misuse of confidential information and infringement of plant variety rights. Robert is an accredited specialist in IP by the Law Society of Scotland.


Trained Maclay Murray & Spens LLP 1998-2000; assistant 2000-05; associate 2005-10; partner 2010-12; partner Brodies LLP 2012. Director of Scottish Society for Computers and Law. Regular contributor to leading IP journals such as ITMA Journal, CIPA Journal and Journal of Intellectual Property Law and Practice.




ITMA (Scottish Committee member responsible for CPD and training); AIPPI, SCL (Scottish Board Member); PTMG, INTA; Law Society of Scotland Technology Committee.


Peterhead Academy, Aberdeenshire; Aberdeen University: (1998 LLB Honours and Dip LP).


Running; enjoying good food and wine and reading/cinema/theatre.

Scotland: Dispute resolution

Commercial litigation

Within: Commercial litigation

Brodies LLP's team has vast experience in high-profile and business-critical litigation, with its workload spanning areas such as insurance, competition, IP/IT, shipping and pensions, among many other areas. Manus Quigg and Louise Shiels together have nearly 30 years of experience of construction disputes. Practice head Joyce Cullen has a 35-year track record in the commercial disputes arena, with a particular strength in banking and financial services litigation. Reflective of the high quality of the team, it includes a team of solicitor advocates across the offices in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen (two of whom are standing junior counsel to the Scottish government).  Corporate restructuring and insolvency experts Rachel Grant and consultant Colin McIntosh are acting for the liquidators of RFC 2012 Plc (in liquidation); the matter recently involved a UK Supreme Court appeal on employee benefit trusts used for the benefit of football players and executives. In 2017, Alan Calvert, Odell Milne and associate Adam McKinlay successfully represented a firm of solicitors and its indemnity insurers at the UK Supreme Court in a case arising from the drafting of notices to quit in  agricultural tenancies. Laura McMillan made partner in November 2017. Kenneth MacDonald is a name to note in Aberdeen. Iain Rutherford, Stephen Goldie and Robert Buchan are also recommended. Tony Jones QC joined from BTO Solicitors LLP.

[back to top]

Scotland: TMT (technology, media and telecoms)

Intellectual property

Within: Intellectual property

Brodies LLP‚Äôs team houses ‚Äėamong the best and most experienced contentious IP practitioners‚Äô, in addition to having a thriving non-contentious practice. Its work covers copyright, trade mark and patent law in a variety of sectors, such as luxury brands, oil and gas, renewables, life sciences and financial services. The ‚Äėknowledgeable and personable‚Äô Gill Grassie¬†leads the IP dispute resolution practice, and has a strong track record representing clients in patent infringement and validity cases as well as brand and trade mark protection cases. ‚ÄėHardworking and very able‚Äô litigator Robert Buchan¬†is ‚Äėcommercially minded and a joy to work with‚Äô; he has particular experience in cross-border patent and copyright infringement, entitlement and validity cases, often involving co-ordinating actions in national courts and IP offices. He is defending a major engineering company against a court action including allegations of copyright and database right infringements and the theft of confidential information. Non-contentious IP head¬†Grant Campbell¬†handles a wide spectrum of transactional and advisory work. Associate Shona Tennant¬†is recommended for providing ‚Äėgood support‚Äô as well as ‚Äėa clear knowledge of IP law‚Äô. Clients include the University of Edinburgh, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Performing Rights Society for Music and the University of Edinburgh.

[back to top]

IHL Briefings

If your firm wishes to publish IHL Briefings or articles, please contact Antony Dine on +44 (0) 207 396 9315 or


Brexit and dispute resolution Ė intra-UK and in the European Union

August 2016. By Robert Buchan

The UK’s vote on 23 June 2016 to leave the European Union raises a wide variety of legal issues and questions. With the UK Government unlikely to trigger Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union until early 2017, and then at least a further two-year negotiation window to determine the future relationship between the UK and the EU, it will be some time before the structure of the future UK/EU relationship is agreed or even much clearer. The flip side of the coin is that, until Brexit happens, it is very much business as usual. [Continue Reading]

Back to index

Legal Developments by:
Brodies LLP

  • Scottish planning obligations: modification and discharge ‚Äď the story so far‚Ä©

    Planning obligations 1 (formerly agreements), which restrict or regulate the use or development of land, perform a crucial function within the planning system. In Scotland in particular, where the community infrastructure levy has not been adopted, the planning obligation continues to be the primary mechanism for the delivery of much needed local and regional infrastructure through developer contributions, often involving very significant sums. ‚Ä©
    - Brodies LLP

Legal Developments worldwide

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to