We wish to report that some major changes will be occurring in the New Zealand Patent Law later this year. The "Patents Act 2013" was passed into law on 13 September 2013, and whilst this new Act is not yet in force, it will take effect by 13 September 2014 at the latest.Inter alia, applications will be subject to more stringent examination under the new Act, and certain types of inventions will no longer be considered to be patentable. 

In view of the above, we would recommend that any proposed New Zealand patent applications (including PCT national phase applications) are filed as soon as possible, and before the new Act takes effect. This will ensure they are examined under the current Act, which is more lenient in its requirements.

Furthermore, the new Act requires that annual maintenance fees be paid before grant, four years from the filing date and annually thereafter, and that annual renewal fees be paid after the grant of a patent. 

If you require any information as to the costs or documentary requirements for filing New Zealand patent applications, please do not hesitate to contact us.