Intellectual Property

Carson McDowell’s intellectual property team provides both contentious and non-contentious advice to clients on all aspects of intellectual property protection and exploitation. As such it has substantial expertise dealing with the intellectual property issues arising not only in a transactional and advisory context, but also in the litigation of matters relating to protection and infringement of intellectual property.

Our team's advice covers a comprehensive spectrum of intellectual property rights, both registered and unregistered, including: copyright, design rights, trademarks, patents, knowhow and commercially sensitive information.

Specialist areas of expertise include the licensing of intellectual property, along with the prosecution and defence of patent infringement proceedings. The team's long standing relationship with the local universities also means it has considerable expertise across a number of technology sectors.

What we do

  • Advising on organisational policies and procedures for the management of intellectual property
  • Undertaking intellectual property audits
  • Conducting intellectual property due diligence in corporate transactions
  • Assisting with the registration of trademarks
  • Providing trademark portfolio management services
  • Instigating and assisting with trademark invalidation and revocation proceedings
  • Advising on the transfer of ownership of intellectual property of all kinds
  • Advice on the licensing of intellectual property both to and from third parties and intra group arrangements
  • Advice on appropriate forms of licensing arrangement in the context of spin out companies
  • Advice on the non tax aspects of the Patent Box
  • Advising on merchandising, advertising, and the grant of sponsorship rights particularly as regards sporting events
  • Advice on the management of business information and commercially sensitive information protection
  • Advice on the intellectual property issues arising in the context of APP development
  • Instigating and defending High court proceedings for the protection of intellectual property of all kinds
  • Advising as to strategies for protecting intellectual property from infringement without recourse to legal proceedings and particularly conducting negotiations between parties involved in the intellectual property disputes including drafting undertakings that will form the basis of any settlement
  • Advising on appropriate means of protecting unregistered intellectual property rights from infringement – passing off actions
  • Generally advising on copyright, patents, knowhow, trademarks and design rights

What Others Say About Us

Chambers and Partners UK 2019

What the team is known for

Prestigious full-service IT firm covering all areas of technology law. Offers comprehensive support for contentious and commercial matters. Expert in cross-jurisdictional work, including direct foreign investment for large companies investing in Irish technology.


A client says: "They helped me implement a new software package and they did it really well."

Work highlights

Advised Northern Ireland Electricity Networks on an ICT infrastructure procurement and associated regulatory compliance issues.

Notable practitioners

Dawn McKnight is noted for her expertise acting for both suppliers and customers of technology products and services.

The Legal 500 2019

What the team is known for

Carson McDowell advises on the full range of IP rights, including copyright, patents, trade marks, know-how and commercially sensitive information. In addition, the firm handles IP litigation, particularly patent and copyright infringement proceedings. The team has been highly active advising foreign clients with R&D facilities in Northern Ireland, and has growing expertise in software licensing, ICT managed services and technology transfer issues.

Notable practitioners

Declan Magee and Dawn McKnight head the contentious and non-contentious sides of the practice, respectively, and Peter Guzhar is highly recommended for IP litigation, particularly patent infringement.

Work highlights

Providing a general IP support service for Innovation Ulster (a wholly owned subsidiary of University of Ulster for IP and technology transfer-related activities).

Providing ongoing advice to Sisaf on IP matters such as a patent and know-how licence agreement entered into with Soterios Limited regarding the development of alopecia treatment drugs using Sisaf’s IP rights.

Advising the University of Ulster on a range of IP matters, including a consortium agreement with various other further education institutions to govern the use of funds as part of a research grant. This involved ensuring the client's background IP was fully protected and that it would fully own all foreground IP which it developed.

Acting for Cosyroof Ireland in a trade mark infringement case which involved a competitor using the client's trade mark in its domain name.

Advising Denman International on taking a full assignment of the IP of "Weaveaze", a product which it had had a licence to manufacture and sell for a number of years.

Significant clients

University of Ulster, Eakin Healthcare Group, Denman International, Vuelos Baratos, StatSport, Ansec IA, Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment, Denroy, Sisaf, Blue Clarity Consultancy.