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Intellectual Property 2 - LAWS3248
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Faculty: Faculty of Law
School:  Faculty of Law
Course Outline: See below
Campus: Kensington Campus
Career: Undergraduate
Units of Credit: 6
EFTSL: 0.12500 (more info)
Indicative Contact Hours per Week: 3
Enrolment Requirements:
Prerequisite: LAWS2381 & LAWS2382, Corequisite: LAWS2311, Exclude: LAWS3021 & LAWS3057; Prerequisite: JURD7281 & JURD7282, Corequisite: JURD7211, Exclude: JURD7321 & JURD7357
Equivalent: LAWS3057
Excluded: LAWS3021
CSS Contribution Charge:Band 3 (more info)
Further Information: See Class Timetable


This course focuses on three aspects of Australian IP law. The first is the law of patents, which protects inventions and new innovations. It will cover the acquisition, ownership, exploitation and enforcement of patent rights and look at emerging issues such as the protection of biotechnology. The second is the action for breach of confidence, which protects of trade secrets and personal information. The third is the legal protection of business reputation, which includes the law of registered trade marks and related doctrines such as the tort of passing off. The requirements for registering marks, infringement and defences, and the elements of passing off will be canvassed, as will policy debates over the scope of legal protection.

Please be aware that students who take LAWS3248 Intellectual Property 2 and/or LAWS3046 Intellectual Property 1 will not be able to take LAWS3021 Foundations of Intellectual Property Law and/or LAWS3057 Advanced Intellectual Property Policy and Practice. Similarly, students who take Foundations of Intellectual Property Law and/or Advanced Intellectual Property Policy and Practice will not be able to take either Intellectual Property 1 or Intellectual Property 2.

Recommended Prior Knowledge

Completion of LAWS2381 Property, Equity and Trusts 1 and LAWS2382 Property and Equity 2

Course Objectives

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the fundamentals of Australian patent and trade mark law
  • Locate and understand relevant statutory provisions and cases
  • Discuss difficulties that may arise in application
  • Identify potential for further law reform
  • Be aware of the practical limits of statute and litigation in resolving patent and trade mark disputes
  • Note the economic realities that lead to particular outcomes

Main Topics

  • Introduction to IP
  • Introduction to patent law: history, context & justifications
  • Patentability requirements
  • Disclosure and claiming requirements
  • Ownership and exploitation
  • Infringement, exceptions and other uses without authorisation.
  • Patent law, plant breeder’s rights and biotechnology
  • Passing off and the protection of business reputation
  • Registered trade mark law: history, context & justifications
  • Requirements for trade mark registration
  • Maintaining rights
  • Assignment and licensing of trade marks
  • Infringement, defences and remedies
  • Related topics: geographical indications, domain names and ‘special events’ legislation


Research Essay (3,000 words) - 50%

Problem Question (3,000 words) - 50%

Course Texts

Prescribed casebook

K Bowrey, M Handler and D Nicol, Australian Intellectual Property: Commentary, Law and Practice (Oxford University Press, 2011)

Recommended textbook
A Stewart, P Griffith and J Bannister Intellectual Property in Australia (4th ed LexisNexis, 2010)


Refer to the course outline which will be provided by the lecturer at the beginning of the relevant semester.

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© The University of New South Wales (CRICOS Provider No.: 00098G), 2004-2011. The information contained in this Handbook is indicative only. While every effort is made to keep this information up-to-date, the University reserves the right to discontinue or vary arrangements, programs and courses at any time without notice and at its discretion. While the University will try to avoid or minimise any inconvenience, changes may also be made to programs, courses and staff after enrolment. The University may also set limits on the number of students in a course.