James Cherry

Consultant, Melbourne | BSc (Biochem), LLB (Hons)

Direct +61 3 8662 7332


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James is a former Managing Director and Principal of FPA Patent Attorneys. He specialises in patents for the pharmaceutical and life sciences sectors in Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia. With a background in science and law, he has extensive experience in advising owners of rights on how to best protect and extract value from their intellectual property and also how to manage issues arising from relevant intellectual property of competitors. He additionally brings to clients detailed knowledge around technology transfer as well as confidential information and trade secrets.

James has actively assisted non-profit research organisations, small start-up companies and large multinationals in their patent and commercialisation strategies and technology transfer negotiations worldwide for over 30 years. He works with local and global clients to understand their business and assists them to develop patent portfolios to maximise their commercial opportunities. He has particular experience with, and is actively involved in, contentious matters, such as patent opposition and re-examination proceedings.

For Australian clients, international management of intellectual property rights is of paramount importance. James has advised on the successful strategic creation, management and exploitation of intellectual property rights worldwide.

For clients outside Australia, James brings a detailed knowledge of the Australian, New Zealand and South East Asian pharmaceutical sector and life-sciences markets to provide insightful advice for organisations seeking to protect and exploit their intellectual property in those countries.

Areas of expertise

  • Patents
  • Biotechnology
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Medical Treatments
  • Food Technology
  • Agribusiness and Agrochemicals
  • Plant Breeder’s Rights
  • Medical Diagnostics


  • Bachelor of Science (Biochemistry), University of Melbourne
  • Bachelor of Laws (Hons), University of Melbourne
  • Registered Patent Attorney (Australia and New Zealand)
  • Graduate, Australian Institute of Company Directors
  • Certificate of Completion, Executive Management, Harvard Business School


  • Fellow: Institute of Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys of Australia
  • International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property
  • Fédération Internationale des Conseils en Propriété Industrielle (International Federation of Intellectual Property Attorneys - FICPI)


  • James was listed as a one of "50 Patent Lawyers you should know" by Asia IP magazine.
  • In 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 James has been listed in the IAM Patent 1000 Guide - the World's Leading Patent Professionals as a Leading Patent Practitioner and as an IP Star by Managing intellectual Property. In 2013 he was referred to as "Frequently named among the nation’s top life sciences gurus" and the following year it was acknowledged that he "Gives great guidance and support when navigating the prosecution process in various jurisdictions." In 2015, he was referred to as "Assisting pharmaceutical concerns with the conception and execution of global management and exploitation game plans." In 2017, it was highlighted that James "Handles patent procurement for a host of heavyweight clients", and that he is the "Go to professional for international technology transfers, another life sciences whizz." In 2018, James was acknowledged for managing the Australian and South East Asian practice with a "Steady hand", and as championing the "Rights of many of the world's leading pharmaceutical outfits at the patent office" and in this year’s guide, his leadership is acknowledged for continuing to "drive the group forward."
  • FPA Patent Attorneys awarded Managing Intellectual Property Australian Patent Prosecution Firm of the Year 2019 and was ranked in the top tier every year since 2017.
  • FPA Patent Attorneys awarded 2019 Winner of Best Independent Patent Law Firm - Australia by Acquisition International (AI) Global.
  • FPA Patent Attorneys awarded 2019 Winner of Pharmaceutical Patent Attorneys of the Year in Australia by Global Law Experts.
  • Intellectual Asset Management’s 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 editions of the IAM Patent 1000 – the World’s Leading Patent Professionals awarded FPA Patent Attorneys the highest category for Patent Prosecution.