Intellectual Property

Leveraging intellectual capital to create a business edge is a key driver for business globally. The laws protecting intellectual property, including copyright, trade marks, patents, designs and trade secrets, are increasingly complex.

MinterEllison’s intellectual property team is at the forefront of intellectual property development globally. Our large and diverse team advises on the creation, acquisition, commercialisation, protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights and has forged an enduring reputation working with leading local and global organisations.

Branding is the key IP driver for industries such as food, wine, household products, luxury goods, apparel, cosmetics, financial services, aviation and telecommunications. We clear new brands, register and maintain trade mark portfolios and enforce registered trade marks and reputation rights. We work with our clients’ marketing and management teams on advertising strategies, clearing product performance claims, watching competitors’ conduct and defending challenges.

For content and technology in media, entertainment, education and services, our copyright lawyers negotiate and arbitrate licensing disputes, counsel and advise, strategically oversee policy reform discussions and enforce copyright against infringers, including counterfeiters.

In the patent-critical sectors of mainstream pharmaceutical, biotechnology, research and development and manufacturing, our technology-savvy lawyers counsel on patenting strategies, litigate, and transact licensing, partnering and other commercialisation deals. We counsel on compliance and represent companies under investigation or challenge in these highly regulated sectors. We litigate intellectual property validity and infringement issues, particularly in patents.

17 December 2015

Developments in technology and its use by both business and consumers have continued to challenge copyright law this year. Most notably, we have seen Dallas Buyers Club LLC's attempts to obtain details of individual copyright infringers through their ISPs which, in turn, has led to the development of a 'three strikes' copyright infringement notice scheme by Communications Alliance and the introduction of website blocking legislation. There have also been a number of other interesting cases which test the boundaries of copyright law, and its ability to protect rights holders.

17 December 2015

After a big year in trade marks in Australia in 2014, including a High Court decision (Cantarella Bros, regarding 'ORO' and 'CINQUE STELLE'), 2015 was a quieter year, with only a couple of decisions of the Full Federal Court raising the stakes above the usual trial judgments in the Federal Court. Nevertheless some significant trade mark issues were addressed by the Courts and the Trade Mark Office, which we discuss below.

10 December 2015

The High Court of Australia rarely considers patent cases, handing down only two decisions in the past seven years. This year, however, we saw two patent decisions from the nation's top Court. So, in celebration of the High Court's renewed attention on patent law, we revisit eight of the key developments in patents this year.

November/December 2015

In the latest issue of the Australian Intellectual Property Law Bulletin, partner Paul Kallenbach and graduate Anthony Middleton take a look at the ongoing tension between copyright laws and evolving technology and consumer behaviour, namely, fan fiction.

2 February 2015

In this edition we look at:

  • Privacy within Australia
  • The global scene
  • What lies ahead for 2015