Patent Lawyer v Patent Attorney

What is a patent attorney?

Patent lawyers are lawyers with particular expertise in enforcing, challenging and/or licensing patents, etc. Patent attorneys are specialists who secure and advise on the coverage of patents. Generally speaking, in Australia, lawyers cannot prepare, file or amend patent applications except under the supervision of a patent attorney. Likewise, Australian patent attorneys generally can’t represent their clients in court or prepare contracts, etc, but routinely work with lawyers to assist on these matters.

BRM Patent Attorneys

We specialise in patent attorney services and maintain good relationships with a network of patent lawyers and barristers with whom we often work closely. We can put together a team to match your goals and tailor our approach to suit you. Many of our clients prefer to keeps us as their main point of contact because we are practical, responsive, reliable and easy to talk to.

Patent attorneys have technical and legal qualifications

In Australia, patent attorneys are required to hold a tertiary qualification in a field of technology that contains potentially patentable subject matter. Usually this is engineering, science or information technology.

They must also pass a series of legal exams which are typically taken as a part of a Masters of Intellectual Property Law. How to become a patent attorney

Officially registered

To practise as a patent attorney in Australia, the person must be registered with the Trans-Tasman IP Attorneys Board. They do not have to be a lawyer, although an in-depth understanding of Australian patent law is essential.

Other titles

The titles ‘patent agent’ and ‘patent lawyer’ are also used in some jurisdictions. In Australia, patent attorneys are often called ‘patent lawyers’, although strictly speaking the terms are not interchangeable. ‘Patent lawyer’ should only be used if the person is qualified as a lawyer. A person can be both a patent lawyer and a patent attorney.

Further reading

Experienced patent attorneys. Melbourne based. Global reach.