WTR Research

The WTR 1000 focuses exclusively on trademark practice and has firmly established itself as the definitive 'go-to' resource for those seeking world-class legal trademark expertise.

Gold - Firms

A leading firm in Belgium, independent full-service ALTIUS proves itself to be indispensable in complex and ground-breaking trademark litigation. It recently introduced new cross-department practice groups, with specific industry focuses, cementing the outfit's status as a force to be reckoned with in multifaceted disputes. Head honcho "Olivier Vrins is an established legal voice in the region and is looked upon not only by his clients, but also by his peers as an expert in the field. He is a true facilitator of conflict resolution through his cordial and balanced approach." As one foreign associate enthuses: “Olivier's strong relationships in the global intellectual property community really set him apart as does his encyclopaedic knowledge of the law. He advises on proactive and reactive strategies, considers the goals and needs of the brands he works with which ensures they receive practical advice in a timely fashion."

Firm Profile

ALTIUS is one of the largest Belgian independent law firms, consisting of approximately 65 lawyers. Established in Brussels and Louvain-La-Neuve, we advise Belgian and international companies on the legal aspects of transactions, projects and disputes.

We help our clients navigate through often-complex legislation and regulatory environments and provide clear solutions to a wide range of legal issues. In addition to our specialist legal knowledge, we focus on thinking creatively with our clients to offer tailor-made solutions. Our aim is, through careful listening and awareness, to turn strategic questions into clear, straightforward answers.

ALTIUS also invests continuously in building long-standing relationships with regulators, civil servants and business people. Our lawyers are members of many national and international business networks, professional organisations and academic forums, which broaden our collective knowledge and expertise. We seek to understand your business and the market in which you operate. This approach enables us to guide you through the entire life cycle of your business, providing practical and strategic advice in often challenging circumstances. Whatever the scale and scope of the contract, our lawyers’ solutions will be realistic and effective.

We know the Belgian market well because we have chosen to focus on it, but this focus does not mean that our activities, experience and specialist knowledge are confined to Belgium. ALTIUS has been handling cross-border legal work for more than 20 years, and over this time we have built excellent working relationships with several law firms in each European jurisdiction.

Our IP practice

ALTIUS’s IP team is one of the largest in Belgium. ALTIUS’s IP expertise covers all the traditional branches of IP law and unfair competition, as well as more recent technology-related disciplines. The team also represents major players in the media and entertainment sectors, and is increasingly involved in regulatory disputes in the innovative drug and seed industries.

We assist clients in the areas of trademarks, trade names and domain names, industrial designs, copyright and related rights, software and database rights, patents and supplementary protection certificates, plant variety rights, geographical indications, licensing and know-how and transfer of technology agreements, unfair competition law and trade secrets, advertisement law and personality rights (including image rights).

ALTIUS has been involved in ground-breaking litigation before the European courts (both the Court of Justice and the General Court) and the Benelux Court of Justice, as well as in numerous high-profile IP cases before the Belgian courts.

ALTIUS’s litigation expertise covers all aspects of dispute resolution, including arbitration. ALTIUS’s IP lawyers also assist clients in specialised transactional work.

ALTIUS’ IP department is ranked in the top tier and has been highly recommended over the past decade by leading international legal directories:

  • Band 1 firm – Chambers Europe, 2021;
  • Tier 1 firm – Legal 500, 2021;
  • Leading – Leaders League 2021 (copyright, trademark litigation, patent litigation);
  • Gold firm – IAM Patent 1000 2020; and
  • Gold firm – WTR 1000 2021.

Our team has also won numerous awards both at the Belgian and international level.

Head of soft IP practice

Olivier Vrins primarily deals with ‘soft IP’ matters (ie, trademarks and anti-counterfeiting, geographical indications, industrial designs, copyright and media law). At the vanguard of trademark law and anti-counterfeiting in Belgium and the European Union (where he is widely known for the authoritative books Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights through Border Measures: Law and Practice in the EU (Oxford University Press), a third edition of which is currently in the pipeline, and Regulation (EU) 608/2013 (International Encyclopaedia of Laws, Kluwer)), Mr Vrins also focuses on geographical indications, copyright and designs.

Get unlimited access to all WTR content