Design Registrations

If you have spent time and money creating a new design or product, a design registration can help you prevent competitors from unfairly taking advantage of those efforts.

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How we can help with design registrations

If you have spent time and money creating a new design or product, a design registration can help you prevent competitors from unfairly taking advantage of those efforts.

Typically the look of a product can be a key influencer in a purchasing decision. The owner of a design registration is granted a monopoly to manufacture, sell, licence, import, and use articles embodying the protected design in New Zealand for up to 15 years.

Registering a design is less expensive than obtaining a patent. The procedures are simpler and enforceable protection is available much sooner. Registration can provide protection against copying the appearance of a preferred version of an invention until a patent is granted for the principle of operation and other embodiments.

The penalties for infringement of a registered design are substantial and can include damages, an account of profits, litigation costs, delivery up of infringing articles and surrender of machinery used to make them. Generally, litigation is not necessary to prevent infringement of a registered design. The existence of a design registration can be sufficient to deter competitors from copying and adequate marking will warn them of the existence of proprietary rights in the design.

The rights conferred by a design registration can be sold or licensed. Manufacturers are often reluctant to enter into a licensing agreement unless an application to register the design has been filed. The existence of a design registration will ensure their investment will not be unfairly diminished by competitors. Design registrations may also be a useful tool for preventing parallel imports.

Design registrations offer greater protection against would be copiers than is available under New Zealand copyright legislation.

Misappropriation of a new design is less likely if an application is filed before approaching potential manufacturers and investors.

Meet our design registration experts

Jonathan Lucas

Partner

Jonathan Lucas

Jonathan heads James & Wells’ Patents Team specialising in mechanical engineering, electronics, physics, telecommunications and software. He has a strong academic background in physics and many years’ patent attorney experience working across all these fields. He specialises in drafting patent…

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Jason Rogers

Partner

Jason Rogers

As Head of the James & Wells Life Sciences team, and with over twenty-five years’ industry experience, Jason’s expertise includes a diverse array of biotechnology fields. Jason’s focus is on high-end intellectual property strategies for patent, design and copyright rights….

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Adam Luxton

Partner

Adam Luxton

Adam is highly regarded in the fields of mining, energy, medical devices and consumer products. As an experienced patent attorney with an extensive background in mining and software engineering, Adam’s services are in demand by national and multinational companies seeking…

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Dr. Andrew Scott

Partner

Dr. Andrew Scott

Andrew heads James & Wells’ Chemistry team. With a broad background in physics, biochemistry, and chemistry, Andrew has also completed a PhD in synthetic medicinal chemistry and post-doctoral studies in materials science. Andrew is passionate about providing solid, commercially relevant…

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Nick Mountford

Partner

Nick Mountford

With over 25-years’ experience as a patent attorney in the engineering/ICT sector, Nick has helped numerous clients achieve commercially beneficial ownership and control of their IP, while mitigating against risks posed by competitors. His work centres on protecting clients’ innovations…

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Mike Flint

Partner

Mike Flint

Mike specialises in the electrical, electronics and software fields and has specialist knowledge of acquiring IP rights in the Asian market. He has a strong academic background having graduated with a first-class honours degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from…

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Ceri Wells

Partner

Ceri Wells

Ceri is a founding partner of James & Wells, a past president of the New Zealand Institute of Patent Attorneys, an experienced patent and trade mark attorney, and an outspoken champion of innovation. As an experienced lawyer and patent attorney…

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Tim Walden

Managing Partner

Tim Walden

Tim is the Managing Partner of James & Wells and specialises in trade mark law. Managing large trade mark portfolios, completing clearance investigations for new brands, devising filing strategies, establishing brand ownership, and enforcing trade marks overseas, are all part…

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Carrick Robinson

Partner

Carrick Robinson

Carrick is a trade mark and branding specialist with over 23 years of intellectual property experience in New Zealand and the United Kingdom. He assists businesses with mitigating brand risk and with leveraging their IP and works with brand managers…

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Jared Millar

Senior Associate

Jared Millar

Jared is a member of the Patents Team. He works with a wide variety of clients in numerous industries including animal health and husbandry products, automated dairy technologies, building and construction technologies, fluid applicators, power generation, and vehicle suspensions. He…

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Dr. Jenny Chien

Patent Executive

Dr. Jenny Chien

Dr. Jenny Chien joined the Auckland Patents team in 2019 after working as a Research Associate at the University of Auckland’s Leukaemia & Blood Cancer Research Unit. Jenny has a Ph.D. in Molecular Cell Biology from Washington University and a…

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Dr. Taylor Smallwood

Trainee Patent Attorney

Dr. Taylor Smallwood

Taylor joined the Brisbane Patents Team in 2021. She previously worked at the University of Queensland as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow since 2018. Her experience at UQ included a collaborative project with international pharmaceutical company, Grünenthal, to develop novel, non-opioid…

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Richard Clement

Senior Associate

Richard Clement

Richard is one of James & Wells’ mechanical engineering experts. His expertise includes the medical device, agri-tech, mechanical, and mechatronic industries. Richard prepares, files and prosecutes patent and design applications in Australia, New Zealand and internationally. He provides advice to…

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Jason Tuck

Senior Associate

Jason Tuck

Ensuring businesses have sound commercial objectives in place, Jason provides advice on identifying, securing, and leveraging their IP – particularly in relation to patents and designs. Between local exporters and overseas companies entering New Zealand, Jason has experience in advising…

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Joseph Garven

Senior Associate

Joseph Garven

Joseph is a New Zealand and Australian patent attorney having a particular focus on mechanical engineering, electronics and software-related technology. He provides useful advice on issues such as patentability, freedom to operate (FTO) and infringement. Joseph regularly prepares new patent…

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Britta Fromow

Consultant

Britta Fromow

Britta is a lawyer and patent attorney with over 20 years’ experience in the Intellectual Property profession. Her specialist area is mechanical engineering, electronics, medical devices and agri-technologies. Before becoming a patent attorney, Britta gained first-hand experience of the R&D…

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Hazell Fernandez

Patent Attorney

Hazell Fernandez

Hazell joined James & Wells’ Auckland Patents Team in 2017. She has a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) specialising in Biomedical Engineering from University of Auckland. The knowledge and skills gained in her degree gives Hazell the ability to advise in…

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Andrew Knowles

Of Counsel

Andrew Knowles

With over 30 years’ experience working in intellectual property, Andrew has been involved in numerous trade mark and design cases both in prosecution and litigation. His current practice includes working with clients on trade marks, copyright, design and patents. Outside…

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Samuel Parkinson

Associate

Samuel Parkinson

Samuel joined the Hamilton Patents Team in 2017. He is a registered Trans-Tasman Patent Attorney with expertise in electronic, software and mechanical inventions. Samuel’s software development background includess embedded software projects, as well as developing electronic test fixtures. Sam’s software…

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Jason Wach

Partner

Jason Wach

Jason is an experienced intellectual property litigator. He has an extensive background in acting for local and international businesses and assisting them with the enforcement of intellectual property rights. He has appeared as counsel and assisted senior counsel in all…

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Ian Finch

Partner

Ian Finch

Ian is recognised as one of New Zealand’s most influential leaders in intellectual property. He has extensive experience advising clients in the filing, prosecution, and enforcement of their innovation at all levels and across a range of industries, particularly in…

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Gus Hazel

Partner

Gus Hazel

Gus is one of Australasia’s most experienced intellectual property lawyers. His experience includes litigation at all levels of the Australian and New Zealand systems, alternative dispute resolution procedures (mediation and arbitration), commercialisation, regulatory issues and administrative law. In addition to…

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Nirupama Buddha

Patent Executive

Nirupama Buddha

Nirupama joined the James & Wells Patents team in 2019. She hails from India where she studied towards a degree in aerospace engineering. She also holds a Master of Laws from the University of Auckland. She has in-house experience as…

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Johnathan Chen

Consultant

Johnathan Chen

Johnathan Chen is a consultant to the Asia Division at James & Wells – a team dedicated to providing specialist intellectual property and business advice to New Zealanders wanting to do business in Asia, and vice versa. Johnathan is seamlessly…

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Insights and resources

Champions of Innovation®

Since 1979, James & Wells has been at the forefront of innovation in Australasia. We are here to help you grow, leverage and protect your IP. Our depth of experience ranges from managing large IP portfolios for international corporations, right through to protecting the ideas of start-ups, and everything in between. No matter the size of your organisation, James & Wells are here to be your dedicated Champions of Innovation®.

We are a full-service IP firm – that means you will find everything you need to protect your IP just by working with us. We will help you with patents, trade marks, litigation and IP strategy – our people are externally recognised as some of the best in the business, and they work together to bring you custom-built IP solutions that are tailored exactly to your needs. When you work with James & Wells, you know you’re in a safe pair of hands, with a highly experience team supporting you.

Talk to us today about how we can work together.

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