Gus Lightowlers
Partner, Melbourne
My practice as a patent attorney is unique, in that it extends from drafting patents to managing patent disputes, including at the Federal Court of Australia and the Australian Patent Office. I have a technical background in mechanical engineering and microbiology, and advise clients on complex intellectual property matters across a range of industries including mining, medical devices, manufacturing, infrastructure, telecommunications, bioengineering and agriculture.

I am a registered patent and trade mark attorney with qualifications in mechanical engineering, microbiology and immunology, and intellectual property law. Before registering as a patent attorney I worked as a professional engineer for several years. This included as a project engineer at CSL, where I managed the construction and commissioning of a state-of-the-art pharmaceutical manufacturing.

I am the trusted advisor to clients on both building patent portfolios and managing complex patent disputes in the Federal Court. I apply my litigation experience to my patent drafting, opposition and advice practice for a diverse range of clients, including in the medtech, mining, infrastructure, and manufacturing fields. Outside of work, I am actively involved in the start-up community, including as a patent mentor for several accelerator programs.

Career highlights

  • I am the subject matter lead of MinterEllison's engineering patent practice. I regularly draft patents for mechanical and electromechanical inventions, and secure grant of those patents in Australia and overseas.
  • Rio Tinto – acted for Rio Tinto in a patent validity action concerning a patent for bulk sorting ore in the Federal Court of Australia.
  • Hytera – acted for Hytera against Motorola in a multijurisdictional patent infringement and validity action concerning three patents for digital two-way radios in the Federal Court of Australia.
  • Allied Pumps – acting for Allied Pumps in a patent infringement and validity action concerning a patent for a power and control system for mining equipment in the Federal Court of Australia. I have also acted for Allied Pumps in an opposition to grant of a related patent at the Australian Patent Office.
  • ESCO – acting for ESCO in several opposition proceedings for patents concerning mining equipment at the Australian Patent Office.
  • Medtech – acting for a medtech company in an opposition to grant of a patent concerning the use of computer vision for analysing facial expressions at the Australian Patent Office.
  • Minnovare – acted for Minnovare in an opposition to grant of a patent for drilling equipment at the Australian Patent Office.
  • VicRoads – advised VicRoads on intellectual property matters, including patent litigation at the Federal Court of Australia.