Josephine Thornton

Josephine Thornton

Josephine has recently returned to the NSW Bar following her five-years’ experience as a barrister from 2003-2008, at which time she was one of the youngest women at the NSW Bar.

In 2008 Josephine returned to practice as a solicitor where she provided her services in intellectual property, insolvency, and class actions; in addition to Commonwealth prosecutions for online child sexual abuse and social security fraud, and NSW prosecutions in relation to consumer protection legislation. She worked at Spruson & Ferguson, Middletons, Schweizer Kobras and Bannister Law Class Actions.

Josephine commenced her career at Mallesons Stephen Jacques (now known as King & Wood Mallesons) in IP/IT focusing on confidential information, copyright, trade mark and pharmaceutical patent cases. She won the UNSW Prize for ‘Best Performance in Intellectual Property’ in 2001 and obtained a Bachelor of Laws (Hons 1st Class)/Bachelor of Science (Genetics) and has published in the area.

Josephine is also fluent in Spanish with official qualifications.


  • 2018  Mastery of Spanish language, DELE Level C2 (certified by the Spanish government)
  • 2010 Legal practice Management Course, College of Law
  • 2001 Bachelor of Laws (Hons. 1st Class)/Bachelor of Science (Genetics), University of New South Wales (UNSW). Awarded the UNSW Prize for ‘Best Performance in Intellectual Property’


NSW Bar Association

IPSANZ – Intellectual Property Society of Australia & New Zealand

Selected Cases

Patent Cases

Federal Court:

  • Dyno Nobel v Orica & Ors – NSD 345/2022 (Downes J) (detonators) – October 2024 trial
  • EIS GmbH v LELO Oceania & Ors – NSD 376/2023 (Nicholas J) (devices)


  • Scott & Anor v McMahon & Ors [2004] NSWCA 327: Involving an account of investor’s funds to the trustee in bankruptcy (sought by a beneficiary).
  • Evans Shire Council v Richardson [2005] NSWCA 416: Negligence – duty of care.
  • Zepinic v Mitrovic [2023] NSWDC 423: Ground of procedural unfairness/bias
  • Wilkshire v Bombala Shire Council [2006] FCA 1158 (31 August 2006): From the trade marks office


  • Re Baldwin; Application for Judicial Advice [2023] NSWSC 1311: Succession – judicial advice
  • Ian Wymer v Industrial Fan Equipment Pty Ltd [2008] ATMO 96 (28 November 2008): Opposition – ownership of trade mark.
  • McMahon v Livingstone and Ors (Sheahan – cross-claimant); Sheahan v Scott & Ophix Pty Ltd [2003] NSWSC 1082: On an account – knowing receipt of trust funds – breach of trust.

Interlocutory Applications

  • Live Earth Resource Management Pty Ltd v Live Earth LLC [2007] FCA 1034: Trade marks; injunction.
  • Sheahan v Slattery (No 2) [2006] NSWSC 711: Order to answer interrogatories on origin of documents where cross-examination not available.

Publications and Presentations

  • 2023- Drafting headnotes for the Intellectual Property Reports.
  • 2007-2014 Drafting headnotes for the Intellectual Property Reports and the Australian Law Reports. Updating loose leaf services, including Lahore’s Copyright and Designs, and Intellectual Property Precedents.
  • 2004 Presented at the College of Law seminar, Genetics, Biotechnology and Legal Issues,with co-presenter Justice Michael Kirby.
  • 2002 Authored ‘Congratulations to the “inventors” of our genes’