News Zone

August 2017 Newsletter 04 Aug 2017

In this August Newsletter issue:

- Wines and Spirits Geographical Indications now registrable in New Zealand
- New Zealand Copyright Act Review Underway

- The Contract and Commercial Law Act 2017
Know your Rights
Zone Welcomes New Staff
Zone will be attending IPSANZ Annual Conference

Wines and Spirits Geographical Indications now registrable in New Zealand

The Geographical Indications (Wine and Spirits) Registration Act 2006 came into force on 27 July 2017, which means it is now possible to protect wines and spirits with a corresponding Geographical Indication (“GI”) in order to further protect and distinguish them in the marketplace. Examples of well-known GIs include “Champagne” for wine and “Roquefort” for cheese.

In New Zealand, a GI will identify a wine or spirit as originating in a specific region, locality or territory and helps to ‘brand’ a particular product by allowing a consumer to refer to the quality, reputation or any other characteristic linked to the indicated geographical origin. For example, for wines it could identify wines from Marlborough or Hawke’s Bay.

 This is good news for the wine and spirit industry as it means that New Zealand wine and spirit makers will be able to further enforce the quality, characteristic and reputation of their goods.

 The GI Register will be maintained and administered by the Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand.

New Zealand Copyright Act Review Underway
The Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs recently announced a review of the Copyright Act 1994 (The Copyright Act). The Copyright Act protects original works and creations such as books, computer programs, drawings, films or music.

The development of new technologies and digital content has created new legal issues in this field. In order to make sure copyright protection keeps up with these changes, the review will identify how well the Copyright Act is meeting its objectives, to identify any barriers, and a plan to deal with any issues.

An issues paper for public consultation will be released early next year.

The Contract and Commercial Law Act 2017
The Contract and Commercial Law Act 2017 (‘the CCLA’) will come into effect on 1 September 2017.

The Act consolidates, updates, and re-enacts the following original statutes which will be repealed from the 1st September 2017:
  • Contracts (Privity) Act 1982;
  • Contractual Mistakes Act 1977;
  • Contractual Remedies Act 1979;
  • Frustrated Contracts Act 1944;
  • Illegal Contracts Act 1970;
  • Minors’ Contracts Act 1969;
  • Sale of Goods Act 1908; and
  • Sale of Goods (United Nations Convention) Act 1994.
  • Electronic Transactions Act 2002;
  • Carriage of Goods Act 1979; and
  • Mercantile Law Act 1908 (other than Part 5).
The CCLA is not intended to make any substantive changes to the law. However, the language of some of the provisions has been modernised, and minor changes have been made to the legal effect of a small number of provisions in order to reconcile inconsistencies or clarify Parliament’s intent.
The consolidation of various Acts in the CCLA is likely to increase accessibility to causes of action previously overlooked, and we anticipate this could have a tangible effect on the claims made in connection with breaches of agreements such as leases, agreements for sale and purchase and other general contracts.

Know your Rights
Once you have a registered trade mark, you own a powerful tool. As the owner of a registered trade mark you have the exclusive right in the country of registration to control use of your trade mark. However, your registration is only as powerful as what you do with it.
Remember, your trade mark is an asset. You can:
  • Authorise or license someone else to use it;
  • Take action against someone who copies your trade mark;
  • Oppose another traders trade mark application for the same or a similar trade mark on the same or similar goods or services;
  • Apply to NZ Customs to prevent the importation of goods that would infringe your trade mark.
Zone IP can help you with any of the above. Contact us today to find out more.

Zone Welcomes New Staff
We have had a number of new faces around the Zone Law offices.

Early July we fare-welled our French intern Camille Perrier. Camille began her legal internship at Zone in January, and has now returned to France to complete her law degree before graduating next year. Camille enjoyed her time both in New Zealand and working with us here at Zone Law, saying “I’ve learnt so much about trademark law and experienced a new way to work and help businesses.  It has also been very enjoyable to work with this awesome team.” We wish Camille the best for completing university and beginning her legal career.

After working at Zone Law part time over the past year, we welcome Heather to the team full time having finally finished her university degree in July. As well as her focus on continually learning through her legal work at Zone Law, Heather’s next step will be to complete her professional examinations so she is able to be admitted as a lawyer.
Finally, we welcome our new intern Dino to the Zone Law team. Dino has completed both his law degree and his professional examinations, and is especially enjoying learning more about IP law here at Zone.

Zone will be attending IPSANZ Annual Conference
The Zone IP and Zone Law team are delighted to be attending the 31st IPSANZ Annual Conference in September at the Gold Coast in Australia.
Zone IP / Zone Law