The Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand (IPONZ) is a business unit within the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE). IPONZ’s trade mark, patent and design services are fully cost-recovered. This means that IPONZ charges fees to recover the costs of its services from those who directly benefit from holding IP rights.
IPONZ has recently carried out a routine review of our fees to support a more consistent and transparent approach to cost-recovery across the range of services that we provide.
The review identified a number of areas where changes could be considered, intending to rebalance patent and trade mark revenues to appropriate levels, and to improve the efficiency, equity and effectiveness of the two regimes.
The proposals were:
- Increasing fees for patent renewals and maintenance.
- Increasing fees for high-cost patent services such as patent restorations and amendments after acceptance, and introducing an ‘excess claims’ fee for complex patent applications.
- Introducing discounted trade mark application fees for applicants who use IPONZ’s ‘search and preliminary advice’ reports and classification picklist.
- Simplifying trade mark application processes by phasing out separate services for ‘search’ and ‘preliminary advice’ reports.
Changes to fees for designs, plant variety rights, geographical indications and hearings services are not being proposed at this time.
Between 25 June and 30 July 2018 public submissions were sought on the proposals. A brief explanation of the fees review and fee change proposals is provided in the ‘Summary’ documents below. Full information is provided in the discussion document.
- Discussion document [1.4 MB PDF]
- Summary of Patent Fee Changes [424 KB PDF]
- Summary of Trade Mark Fee Changes [416 KB PDF]
The submissions have been carefully considered and we are now seeking Cabinet support for our revised proposals. Pending Cabinet approval, drafting instructions will be provided to the Parliamentary Counsel Office to give effect to the proposals. The proposals will require amendments to the Trade Marks Regulations 2003, the Patents Regulations 2014 and the Patents Regulations 1954.
If the regulations are approved, they will then be gazetted – with changes taking effect 3 months following gazetting. The earliest effective date of any changes to fees will be 1 May 2019.
Why the long lead time to implementation?
IPONZ will need to officially notify the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) of changes to our fees for trade mark and patent applications filed under the Madrid and PCT systems. We will also need to make changes to our case management facility and payment systems as well.
How to stay informed
IPONZ will continue to update clients as more precise information is available.
To receive early notice of updates, subscribe to our Latest News email newsletter.
If you have any particular questions in relation to the changes you may email IPONZ.