A patent attorney is a person who represents a patent applicant or patent holder and is specially qualified to do so. Patent attorneys can help clients file, prosecute (e.g. respond to examination reports) and maintain patent applications as well as act for clients in patent oppositions and provide patent validity and infringement advice.

Registration as a patent attorney in Australia is administered by the Trans-Tasman IP Attorneys Board. The Trans-Tasman IP Attorneys Board publishes a Code of Conduct and administers the disciplinary regime for the profession.

Some Australian patent attorneys are fellows or ordinary members of the Institute of Patent & Trade Mark Attorneys of Australia, the professional body governing the patent attorney profession in Australia.

Patent attorneys have a right of privilege in their communication with clients in respect of intellectual property matters.


Patent attorneys generally must have an engineering or science degree and have completed a group of topics prescribed by the Professional Standards Board. This group of topics may take the form of a Masters degree such as the Master of Intellectual Property offered by the University of Technology, Sydney.


The Institute of Patent & Trade Mark Attorneys website provides a good summary of what activities patent attorneys can carry out:

  • Advise on intellectual property (IP), and help IP owners register and maintain their property
  • Apply for and secure patents, registered trademarks, industrial designs and plant variety types in Australia and overseas
  • Help transfer technology by licensing and other processes
  • Conduct IP audits of organisations and products
  • Conduct litigation in Australia and overseas
  • Determine whether a development is new and sufficiently inventive enough to justify a patent
  • Determine the nature and ambit of inventions and prepare patent specifications
  • Lodge documents with the Patent Office, and guide applications through the process
  • They also help clients manage their IP portfolios, advise on patents and registrations held by others, and advise on whether developments infringe or might infringe rights held by others.

This site is sponsored and administered by:

Baxter IP, Patent & Trade Mark Attorneys Sydney & Melbourne

Baxter IP is a leading patent & trade mark attorney firm in Sydney & Melbourne specialising in obtaining international patent protection for its clients. Their clients include a number of well known multinational corporations, small businesses, venture capital firms, new business start-ups, entrepreneurs and not-for-profit organisations across a broad range of technologies.

The team at Baxter IP pride themselves on observing the highest standard in quality of work and advice to give their clients an unrivelled edge in their attempt to secure patent rights internationally and then capitalise on their IP investment.

For a firm that specialises in protecting intellectual property in important markets such as the United States, Europe & China, contact Baxter IP, Patent & Trade Mark Attorneys Sydney & Melbourne.