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Tony Watson

Fax +61.3.9205.2055

Mr. Watson is a partner in the firm's intellectual property law group. He acts in both prosecution and litigation matters.

Mr. Watson acts for Australian and international clients in advising, prosecuting, enforcing and defending trade marks, designs, patents, copyright and trade secrets and litigation proceedings concerning these rights and related trade practices litigation.

Mr. Watson provides pro-active commercial advice in these areas on all aspects of registration, prevention, protection and enforcement. He is a “big-picture'” thinker and an excellent strategist in brand protection and in large litigation cases. Mr. Watson has had over 25 years experience in advising clients in enforcement programs, brand protection strategies and large court actions involving a broad range of intellectual property and trade practices issues.

Mr. Watson was recognised as one of Australia’s leading alternative dispute resolution and life sciences lawyers in the Best Lawyers (Australia) list most recently published in 2019.


  • Recognised Practitioner in Chambers Asia Pacific for Intellectual Property: Trade Mark & Copyright, 2019
  • Listed in Doyle's Guide Leading Intellectual Property Lawyers, Recommended (2018)
  • Listed in Doyle's Guide Victoria Leading Contentious Intellectual Property Lawyers, Leading (2018)
  • Recognised as a Trade Mark Star – Australia by Managing IP Stars, 2019
  • Listed Lawyer, Alternative Dispute Resolution, and Life Sciences, Best Lawyers (Australia), 2018
  • Recognised, The World's Leading Trademark Professionals, World Trademark Review, 2017
  • Leading Victorian Trade Mark Lawyer, Doyle's Guide (2017, 2016)
  • Preeminent Victorian Copyright & Soft IP Lawyer, Doyle's Guide (2017, 2016, 2015)
  • Preeminent Victorian Trade Mark Lawyer, Doyle's Guide, 2015
Patent Litigation
  • Advising SNF Australia, an Australian company which manufactures chemicals used in water treatment (particularly mining), in relation to Patent Oppositions in the Australian Patents Office, and patent invalidity and patent infringement proceedings in the Federal and High Court. We have acted on various proceedings involving innovation and standard patents and patents of addition.
Trade Practices
  • Acting for Darrell Lea Chocolates on a Federal Court of Australia case involving allegations by Cadbury of breaches of the Trade Practices Act and passing off and the opposition of Cadbury's application to register the colour purple in relation to chocolate.
  • Acting for Local Directories in a Federal Court action in successfully defending claims of misleading and deceptive conduct, as well as passing off, based on use of the colour yellow for phone directories.
  • Acting for BHP in the Supreme Court of Australia cases in respect of allegations of breaches of the Trade Practices Act, breaches of contract and negligent misrepresentation.
  • Acting for Blackmagic Design in a Federal Court of Australia action in which two former employees were found to have breached their fiduciary duties and misused confidential information of Blackmagic Design.
Trade Marks
  • Providing strategic advice in respect of trade marks and designs registration to clients including Anheuser Busch InBev, AAMI, Dr Martens, Camper and Seafolly and many other fashion and footwear manufacturers.
Anti-Counterfeiting and Customs
  • Acting for many international brand owners in anti-counterfeiting programs involving customs programs, market watches, search orders, freezing assets and contempt proceedings. Such clients include Ugg Australia, G-Star, Dr Martens, Camper, Diesel, JellyCat, Converse, Birkenstock and American Crew.
Copyright and Designs
  • Acting for Carlisle Homes in relation to a copyright infringement linked to company-specific building plans against Tick Homes (Carlisle Homes Pty Ltd v Tick Homes Pty Ltd [2018] FCA 973).
  • Acting for Porter Davis in several Federal Court of Australia actions involving claims of copyright infringement against Metricon, Carlisle Homes and Dennis Family Corporation.
  • Defending Australian Local Directories in claims of breach of copyright and passing off and the opposition of Telstra/Sensis’ application to register the word YELLOW in relation to directories.
  • Advising on copyright and design infringement proceedings for Review, Bettina Liano, AG, Elwood, G-Star, Diesel, Ladakh, Gorman, Metalicus and many other fashion designers in respect of copying their original clothing designs.
  • Acting for Seafolly in a case concerning comments made by another swimwear designer on Facebook and in the media involving allegations of misrepresentation, injurious falsehood and copyright infringement.