In 2019, changes to intellectual property laws in New Zealand will significantly benefit international and local Intellectual Property owners. Many of the changes will support New Zealand’s ratification of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership. (“CPTPP”). Key aspects of the changes are outlined below. Please contact us should you require assistance regarding your intellectual property portfolio in New Zealand in light of these changes.
- Commencing from 30th December 2018, the Patents Act 2013 (NZ) is amended to provide a 12-month grace period for self-publication of the Invention before filing.
- We consider that this amendment provides significant advantages to international and local businesses seeking patent protection in New Zealand and aligns with current Australian and US law.
- Commencing from 30th December 2018, the Trade Marks Act 2002 (NZ) is amended to allow for the award of additional damages for trade mark infringement, and the requirement for the Courts to order the destruction of counterfeit goods in infringement proceedings except in exceptional cases.
- New Zealand Customs will have the power to act on its own initiative to temporarily detain suspected import or export shipments of goods that infringe trade marks. This may arise in the absence of a Customs notice issued from the rights holder.
- New Zealand Customs will have the power to act on its own initiative to temporarily detain suspected shipments of goods that infringe copyright. This action may arise in the absence of a notice from the copyrights holder.
- The Copyright Act 1994 (NZ) is amended to grant performers (such as musicians and actors) moral and property rights over the live communication (and recordings) of their performance to the public.
Plant Variety Rights (PVR)
- Under the CPTPP, New Zealand will now be required within three (3) years to modernise the PVR regime to be consistent with the updated international agreement on plant variety rights.
- IPONZ recently conducted a public consultation of the PVR regime in New Zealand and plans to release of an options paper in mid-2019. We will keep you updated on any proposed amendments.
Schedule of Costs – Patents & Trade Marks
- Independent of the CPTPP, a new Schedule of Costs will apply for Patent and Trade Mark Hearings before IPONZ for all proceedings filed from 1st February 2019.
Disclaimer: For general information purposes only. Not intended as legal advice. Please contact us should you require any assistance regarding your New Zealand portfolio in light of these changes.