Leading IP experts

Clever new brands, products and processes are the backbone of our business and this country’s economy.

Our experts have diverse backgrounds in science and technology and are able to capture opportunities beyond the immediate invention.

We act for many Kiwi exporters, are familiar with international patent and trade mark law, and have established a significant network of associates around the globe. This means we draft specifications to international standards and develop filing strategies tailored to your business needs.

Let’s face it, we’re geeks with the tools of local and international law and business.

How we can help

We will enable you to own and control your intellectual property.

But that’s just the start of the conversation. Who else is in your space? How can you expand into other markets? The right conversations at the right times can make a big difference to the speed and scale of your success. Whether you’re looking to grow or leverage your knowledge, technology, design or brand - you’ve come to the right place.

Patents

Protect your rights to exclude others from making, using, selling or importing your invention or design without your consent.

Design Registration

A registered design protects the shape or appearance of a product and is used to deter others from copying it.

Plant Variety Rights

Protecting the rights granted to the breeder of a new variety of plant, giving the breeder exclusive control over the propagating and harvested material.

Copyright

Protect your original works of authorship including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic works, novels, movies, songs, computer software, and architecture.

Trade Secrets & Non-Disclosure

Protect your formula, practice, process, design, instrument, pattern, commercial method, or compilation of information not generally known or reasonably ascertainable by others by which your business can obtain an economic advantage.

Trade Marks

Distinguish your goods or services by using a trade mark. Your trade mark could include words, logos, shapes, colours, sounds, smells or any combination.

Domain Names

A domain name is a unique address that people use to find you on the internet, whether for websites or for email. Most companies register a domain using their company name, or an abbreviation of it.

Geographic Indications (GI)

GI is a sign used on products that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation that are due to that origin. GIs help “brand” a product and differentiate it from other products, assuring consumers that the product is authentic and has specific characteristics due to its origin.

Anti-Counterfeiting

We specialise in anti-counterfeiting advice, strategy and prompt action, including issuing cease and desist letters and issuing infringement proceedings.

Fair Trade

Legislation of intellectual property rights are primarily enforced under the Fair Trading Act (FTA). The FTA applies to conduct "in trade" and endeavours to promote fair competition and protect consumers by prohibiting businesses from making misrepresentations to consumers about your goods and services.

Enforcement & Dispute Resolution

When IP rights are infringed, rights holders can take action against infringing conducts and enforce their rights.

Licensing & Commercialisation

Our commercial experts help take your portfolio of IP assets and create economic benefits through portfolio management, integration of IP into business strategy and maximizing the value of your IP.

International Filings

Our dedicated International Filing Desk (IFD) is available to assist overseas clients and associates with filing their international patent or trademark applications in New Zealand, Australia and across the Pacific Islands.

Renewals & Maintenance

Trust our IP renewals specialists to manage your portfolio with care. To maintain your IP you'll need to renew your registration by the due date. We make sure you stay completely up-to-date with the relevant legislative developments.

Dispute resolution

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The size of our Litigation Team allows sufficient flexibility to take on substantial pieces of litigation at short notice, handle major disputes without disruption to other clients or matters, and ensure speedy advice at all times across Australasia.

James & Wells has New Zealand’s largest and most successful IP Litigation Team. Our team consists of specialist lawyers and patent attorneys who deal with IP disputes, litigation, opposition and revocation matters. Offering specialist advice relating to patents, registered designs, copyright, trade marks, unfair trade and competition, and anti-monopoly and regulatory compliance.

We have extensive experience in both mediation and arbitration, and are supported by “in-house” representation before all levels of the New Zealand and Australian Courts.

James & Wells has acted in three of the first six decisions under the new ‘Raising the Bar’ amendments to the Patents Act in Australia, and currently acts in more New Zealand patent oppositions than any other firm.

Get in touch to find out more.

Competitive intelligence

Clever is knowing who your competitors are, what they’re doing and where they’re doing it.

With quality Intellectual Property market intelligence we can help you with:

  • How to work around other's rights
  • R&D directions
  • How to block off a competitive space
  • Branding strategies
  • How to challenge others rights – successfully and cost effectively
  • Filing strategies
  • Deal structures
  • Border control strategies
  • On-going intelligence gathering

This intel will set you up to make the right moves at the right times, in the right direction.

Get in touch to find out more.
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Food & beverage innovation

With the New Zealand Government’s plans to treble the F&B sector’s export market by 2025, leveraging the value of IP will be key to achieving the greatest return.
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How better to meet these goals than dedicating a team to the cause. With the teams patent, trade mark, design, business in Asia, commercial, business strategy and commercialisation know-how, we have the expertise and credentials to leverage your place in the market.

So what can we do for you?

  • Identify your intellectual property in order to leverage your reputation and brand
  • Protect new concepts relating to your product or process
  • Facilitate business opportunities with license agreements
  • Develop strategy and business models e.g. exporting your IP instead of exporting tangible food goods
  • Secure design registrations to protect the look of a product
  • Advise on legal compliance including Advertising Standards Codes – advising, pre-vetting advertisements and responding to complaints;
  •  Packaging and Labelling compliance – e.g. Food Standards Codes, Fair Trading Act etc.

As part of our health claims advisory service, we can:

  • Review existing/new product health claims and advise if they comply with the new standards
  • Assist with the application process for self-substantiated ‘general level’ health claims, if not already pre-approved
  • Provide strategic advice on how to maximise the value of health claims for current and future products
  • Leverage health claims through a products branding, packaging and advertising
Get in touch to find out more.

Intellectual property strategy

Strategic considerations over-ride everything we do at James & Wells.

After all, 80% of the value of a business is in its intangible assets – our job is to help you make the most of that.

Intellectual property issues can drive most strategic considerations in an organisation. That’s why we align an intellectual property strategy with your business strategy. Our Team has diverse business and scientific backgrounds enabling them to create and implement strategies that realise the true value of their ideas.

Get in touch to find out more.
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IP funding and investment

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We are a recognised IP funding provider and have close working relationships with many investment providers.

New Zealand has a strong ecosystem of investment and IP funding providers. A range of intellectual property funding is offered by the New Zealand government, who recognises that the country’s future economic growth is dependent on a thriving innovation ecosystem and the creation of world-class businesses built on solid intellectual property assets.

If you need assistance to determine which funding or investment options may be best suited to your requirements, or would like a personal introduction, contact us.

Get in touch to find out more.

Business and community sponsors

Here's just some of the organisations we support through partnerships, sponsorships, donations and pro bono work.