What is the Pekama IP Community?
The Pekama IP Community is a trusted network of IP firms that work in favourable conditions with each other and are committed to supporting each other in growing each member’s IP practice.
How does it work?
The Pekama IP Community is a reputation-based system – it favours firms that support the community and its members. Contribution to the community is rewarded with community score and members are encouraged to work with firms with a higher community score.
We already know that community members who choose to work with other members are more pleased with the services they receive, receive more reciprocal work and have better ROI than any other form of business cooperation.
Our goal is to be the go-to place for working with foreign associates.
Is working with Pekama ethical and safe?
Absolutely. We are a highly ethical organisation. Feel free to read our ethical policy (below).
Where to start?
We recommend that you start by exploring the site.
Start by browsing existing community members, identifying community members that send work to your jurisdiction and saving them for later (when you have a case, you will get back to them).
Growing your Community score
Head to the GROW tab. This is where you build your community score, your online reputation on Pekama.
Community score is an incredible mechanism. It allows firms to get a real picture of the amount and type of activity of other firms on the platform. Pekama members who use it to send outbound work usually come back and believe in the system and the concept of a community. They therefore look for other firms that feel the same way and would be looking at the community score of the firms that they are looking at and prefer firms with a higher score.
There are three ways to grow your community score:
- When you send a case to another member, you receive 100 points. You can start an inquiry to check members up and you don’t have to proceed with them.
- When you invite a new member to the platform, you receive 50 points if that member signs up.
- When you invite your own firm’s members (your team) you receive 5 points whenever one of your team members signs up.
Inviting your existing foreign associates
We firmly recommend that you invite all your existing foreign associates onto Pekama. This will allow you to work with them on Pekama and build up your community score by doing so. At the same time, if you invited a foreign associate who is not already on the platform, there will be no fee for any of you when you work with them. You will also appear on the top of their list for your jurisdiction. And finally, both you and your foreign associate will get a community score uplift when they sign following an invitation.
Pekama has grown from 0 to 800 members in just 6 months. It is likely that your foreign associates will have a Pekama account shortly anyway so help them out by inviting them yourself!
Your first outbound case
When you are ready to send your first outbound case, you can do it by choosing some members and clicking + START A NEW CASE. You can easily compare members’ prices, responses, and you can correspond with members until you are happy to proceed with one (you don’t have to proceed with anyone).
When a member confirms safe receipt of your case, your community score is boosted.
Pekama charges $50 from the recipient of the case for using the platform to manage the case. We offer subscription options as well.
Pekama doesn’t handle payments between firms but if a firm does not pay you and no proper reason is provided, we will get involved and, in extreme cases, will remove firms from the community for not paying. This gives you an extra layer of confidence and protection.
Our premium service – a great solution for busy IP firms
Many of our members are extremely busy. This is why we are offering a service whereby we will identify suitable firms and start an inquiry on behalf of our members. In doing so, we will try to identify firms based on what has been defined to us and unless otherwise instructed, suggest firms with reasonable prices, fast response times, fluent English and better chances of sending reciprocal work.
Our premium service is offered for 3 months on a complementary basis. After 3 months, we will make an offer based on the amount of activity. For firms with a great deal of activity, the service may be free forever!
Get in touch with jan at pekama dot com if you are interested in our premium service!
Pekama’s Ethical Policy
Pekama is a company that offer new and innovative ways for IP firms to operate.
The legal industry is highly regulated and in many countries there are limitations on what attorneys can do or cannot do.
The purpose of our ethical policy is to ensure our members that Pekama is committed to keeping a high ethical standard and to meeting the different rules of the many jurisdictions our members are coming from.
Whilst ethical rules vary, the principles are usually the same. We would therefore like to address the main points that our members are bringing up and to reassure them that being a Pekama member is a great ethical choice.
Our general commitment to ethics
We are committed to consider the ethical implications of our platform and to constantly work to make sure that our innovation is in line with ethical requirements.
We are committed to dealing with any questions and concerns brought up by members and will never dismiss any such concern. We will deal with any ethical issue with a “can do” attitude and will actively offer answers and solutions. Please don’t hesitate to raise any ethical issues with us.
Many jurisdictions do not allow attorneys to pay commissions or to split their fees at all or with non-attorneys. Other jurisdictions require that the attorneys disclose any arrangement of fee-splitting.
Pekama’s common billing model is charging a fixed amount (typically $50) from each member who manages a case over the platform.
Our fees are charged for the use of our platform, and hence, they do not amount to fee-splitting, or a referral commission.
We would like to make it absolutely clear that:
- There is no fee for an introduction. In fact, members can start a conversation on Pekama with another member and carry on this conversation without a charge. The details of all members are open and members can find other members independently.
- There is no fee for referral of work. Members are not obliged to use the Pekama platform to handle their work. Obviously, Pekama has no interest in supporting members who take their work off the platform and who are not interested to use it, but there is no obligation to pay a fee unless a member sees value in using the platform.
- The fee is charged to use the platform to manage a case. Managing a case in Pekama means providing a better service to overseas members. It includes the storage of conversations and documents as well as access to the background docketing system.
- There is no correlation between the case and the value of the case and the fee that we charged, which is a fixed management fee.
The use of Pekama is therefore equivalent to using a paid data rooms / online storage, and does not amount to fee splitting or a commission.
Inquiries in Pekama start as conversations that include a Pekama member. We urge you to keep these conversations confined to published data and pricing information and general data and not to delve into specifics of cases. As soon as instructions are sent, we are automatically removed from these conversations. Pekama representatives can only enter conversations later for the purpose of technical support, if requested.
This means that Pekama representatives post-instructions have the same level of access as Microsoft does to Office 365, Google to Gmail, or Dropbox or Box to their products. In fact, there is a handful of people in Pekama who are allowed to enter conversations even for mere technical support.
Cloud services and security
Pekama stores conversations and documents in the cloud. Whilst there has been concerns in the past about cloud storage, there is now a consensus that cloud storage is much safer than in premise storage. Large pharma companies, as well as universities, are now storing all their data in secure cloud storage.
Pekama’s highly secure cloud storage is based on the AWS (Amazon) infrastructure in Ireland. This means that the US government has no access to it or an ability to obtain it with a warrant and that the data is subject to EU privacy law. AWS is known to be one of the most secure infrastructures in existence and is widely used for storing sensitive data, including governmental personal data.
All the data stored by Pekama is encrypted, both at rest and on the move.
Pekama does not store passwords. Instead, it stores the second degree hash values of passwords. This means that we don’t know what our members passwords are and are not able to enter their accounts without their permission.
Finally, Pekama instructs an external company of ethical hackers to try to penetrate its data and detect vulnerabilities on a regular basis. We constantly improve our data protection and add more and more layers of security.