2017 Smit & Van Wyk, Inc.
  • INTA Annual Meeting 19 – 23 May 2018, Seattle, Washington… read more
  • Wessel van Wyk and Kimberley Rose Smith contributed to the book published by Kluwer Law International… read more
  • Noëlle Pearson – Best Final Year Student… latest news
  • We have moved to our new offices at Brooklyn Bridge Office Park in Pretoria… latest news
  • Esmari Jonker contributed to the International Comparative Legal Guide series: Franchise 2018… read more

Intellectual Property Attorneys

Smit & Van Wyk, Inc. is a specialist legal practice dealing exclusively with patent and trademark law in South Africa. Our qualified and experienced patent attorneys are able to give you the best legal advice regarding your intellectual property. Our fields of practice encompass all aspects relating to patents, trademarks, designs, copyright, including litigation, as well as providing advice on the commercial rights attached to each of these forms of protection.

Strange as it may sound, many individuals and businesses are unaware of the intellectual property that they have created, or they often underestimate its value. Therefore, if certain steps are not taken to protect their intellectual property (patents, registered designs, trade marks, copyright), such intellectual property cannot be exploited to its full commercial potential.

The first step in protecting your intellectual property is to identify it. Although it may seem like an obvious process, it is most often not possible to identify the intellectual property of a business without involving specialized expertise. Once the intellectual property of a business has been identified, it is possible to take steps to protect it, whether by means of registered forms of intellectual property protection such as patents, trademarks, registered designs, or unregistered forms of intellectual property protection, such as copyright, contractual agreements or non-statutory forms of protection.


A patent is an exclusive right granted by a sovereign state to an inventor for a limited period of time in exchange for the details of that invention. The procedure for granting a patent vary widely between countries according to national laws and international agreements, but a patent application must include claims that define the invention. These claims must meet relevant patentability requirements, such as novelty, usefulness, and non-obviousness. It is highly recommended that your claims be written by a qualified patent attorney or patent agent.

Trade Marks

A Trademark is a mark which distinguishes your goods or services from goods or services of others in South Africa, or elsewhere. Examples of Trade Marks: Name, Slogan, Logo, Shapes, Three-dimensional Marks, Colors, Holograms, Motions / Multimedia, Positions, Gestures, Olfactory (smells / scents), Sounds / Tunes, Tastes, Textures. A registered trade mark can be protected forever.


The Rain Catcher

The Rain Catcher Presenting our clients' patented invention, The Rain Catcher, which was developed in South Africa. The invention is a lightweight device that collects rain, which can in turn be used as safe drinking water. It is also suitable for post...

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Noëlle Pearson Trade Mark Practitioner

Noëlle Pearson - Best Final Year Student On Wednesday 15 November the South African Institute of Intellectual Property Law (SAIIPL) voted to accept new fellows who qualified as Trade Mark practitioners in 2017. The afternoon lunch took place at the Pretoria Country...

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