Unfortunately, after more than 100 days of no community transmission of COVID-19 in New Zealand, there has been a re-emergence of the virus in the Auckland community.
New Zealand has a four-level COVID-19 alert system. Due to the recent resurgence, the Auckland region moved to alert level 3 on 12 August 2020, while the rest of the country moved to alert level 2. The government announced yesterday that the Auckland region will move down to level 2 at 11.59pm on Sunday 30 August, and the rest of New Zealand will remain at level 2. These settings will be in place for one week and will be reviewed again before Sunday 6 September 2020.
AJ Park has a comprehensive COVID-19 response plan and procedures in place, and we are committed to maintaining the high-quality services that you know and expect from us. All of our Auckland office staff are currently working remotely and will do so until Monday 31 August. Our Wellington office is operating a team A and B protocol. Team A is working in the office, and team B is working from home. We are taking this measure to help protect the health and wellbeing of our people, our clients and our communities.
We recognise that many of our clients may be struggling with the impacts of COVID-19. The Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand (IPONZ) will accept requests for extension of time on a case-by-case basis. In cases where circumstances related to COVID-19 have affected the ability to respond by a given deadline, they recommend that the extension request provides specific details of these circumstances. Such requests will be treated favourably by IPONZ. IP Australia is offering extensions of up to three months free of charge until at least 30 September 2020.
If you are concerned about your IP portfolio, please get in touch with us. We are committed to supporting you and are here to help through these difficult times.