First award of indemnity costs by the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand

Ellis Terry was recently successful in obtaining what is believed to be the first award of indemnity costs by the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand (IPONZ).  Despite their power to award indemnity costs, IPONZ has always been reluctant to award costs greater than the scale.  Numerous applications for indemnity costs have been unsuccessful over the years.
In Compudigm International Ltd and Bally Technologies Inc v Cardno [2013] NZIPOPAT 31 (13 December 2013) IPONZ reversed the incorrect registration of Bally Technologies as a joint applicant of a patent application.  Registration of the alleged assignment to Bally Technologies would have required the consent of all joint applicants, including Mr Cardno.  Bally Technologies and their lawyers were aware of this requirement. Nevertheless, in the absence of Mr Cardno’s consent, Bally applied for registration as joint applicant on two separate occasions and on the second occasion their application was incorrectly allowed.  In view of that conduct, indemnity costs were deemed appropriate.