New Zealand Intellectual Property Attorneys Inc was established in 1912 as The New Zealand Institute of Patent Attorneys Inc. In 2021 we changed our name to better reflect the composition of our membership. We are an incorporated body representing most trans-Tasman registered Patent Attorneys who are resident and practising in New Zealand. Our membership also includes Australian registered Trade Mark Attorneys and IP lawyers resident and practising in New Zealand.

The current membership of NZIPA comprises comprises 173 Fellows, 3 Honorary, 15 Students, 13 Non-resident, 29 Associates and 2 Retired.

The organisation is governed by a set of Rules.

A Council of 9 Fellow members is elected each year at the Annual General Meeting. They meet at least monthly throughout the year to manage the affairs of the Institute.

The Rules set out the objects of the organisation, which are as follows:

  • To maintain a representative group of registered patent and trade mark attorneys in New Zealand.
  • To promote the interests of the organisation.
  • To assist in developing, promoting and maintaining the integrity of the laws and regulations relating to intellectual property matters.
  • To preserve and maintain the integrity and status of the patent attorney profession by setting and administering Rules.
  • To arrange and promote opportunities to acquire and share knowledge about the patent attorney profession.

NZIPA has 5 membership categories to which members belong.

  • Fellowship - members who are registered as a trans-Tasman patent attorney or Australian trade mark attorney, and who are resident and entitled to practise in New Zealand, as well as being of good repute.
  • Honorary Membership - this is for distinguished individuals, who from their contribution to advancing the objects of the organisation, deserve this high honour.
  • Student Membership - members who are not qualified as a patent attorney, but who are studying for qualifications as a patent attorney or as an Australian trade mark attorney.
  • Non-resident Membership - members who are IP practitioners outside New Zealand, and ex-Fellows who are no longer resident in New Zealand
  • Associate Membership - members who are not patent attorneys but are of good repute, and come within one of the following definitions:
    1. are qualified to advance the objects of the organisation through their connection with law, science or the arts, or
    2. have been involved in intellectual property work in the business of a registered patent attorney for at least two years
    3. employees of law firms or companies that undertake Intellectual Property related work where they do not fall within the definitions of either previous sub clauses (a) or (b) above.

The current membership of NZIPA comprises comprises 173 Fellows, 3 Honorary, 15 Students, 13 Non-resident, 29 Associates and 2 Retired. The membership comprises virtually the whole of the senior professional staff of all of the firms of registered patent attorneys practising in New Zealand comprising more than one partner, plus most of the registered patent attorneys who practice as sole practitioners. In addition a number of our Fellows are partners or senior staff solicitors in the intellectual property law sections of some major law firms in New Zealand.

If you wish to join NZIPA, please download our application forms.

Our members are very familiar with intellectual property laws in New Zealand, and also in overseas countries.

Our Fellows are also registered as patent attorneys in Australia following the 2017 implementation of the Trans-Tasman patent attorney regime that provides for a single system of accreditation, registration and professional regulation of patent attorneys in both countries. For a complete list of registered Trans-Tasman patent attorneys resident in New Zealand, please to refer to the TTIPAB website here.

Since registration as a patent attorney does not require membership of the NZIPA we are sometimes asked why an individual should become a member. Refer to our membership benefits.

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