Esmé du Plessis

Esmé  du Plessis

Esmé du Plessis

Specialist Consultant

Patent Attorney


  • Specialisation

  • Bio

    Esme du Plessis is a qualified patent attorney (the first woman to qualify as such in South Africa) and a former partner of Adams & Adams, Pretoria, South Africa. She obtained BSc and LLB degrees from the University of Pretoria, served articles of clerkship with Adams & Adams, and was admitted as a partner of Adams & Adams in 1966.

    Having retired as a partner, she is currently a full-time senior consultant at Adams & Adams. Her areas of specialisation are patents, copyright, industrial designs; international aspects of intellectual property law; policy and strategy principles for the protection and commercialisation of intellectual property; and the development and drafting of legislative provisions in these areas. She serves on the Statutory Advisory Committee on IP of the Minister of Trade & Industry.

  • Academic

    • BSc (Chem & Maths) – University of Pretoria | 1958
    • LLB – University of Pretoria | 1962

  • Qualifications

    • Qualified Patent Agent | 1963
    • Admitted attorney | 1965

  • Credentials


    • Extraordinary Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Pretoria
    • Statutory Advisory Committee on Intellectual Property – Vice Chair
    • Member of Honour,   International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI)
    • LSSA Committee on Intellectual Property – Chair
    • LSSA Committee on Trade in Services – Chair
    • South African Institute of Intellectual Property Law (SAIIPL) – Fellow
    • Law Society of the Northern Provinces – Member


    • Transvaal Law Society – President
    • Law Society of South Africa – Co-Chair
    • Council of the University of Pretoria – Chair
    • AIPPI South African Group – President
    • Laureate Award Winner (1998)
    • Business Women’s Association (BWA) – Member
    • Regional Award Winner (2002)
    • Black Lawyers Association – Member
    • Pretoria Attorneys’ Association – Member