Background &


  • Legal career began at a trade mark firm on the South Coast, where Sam developed the skills needed to pursue a career in the world of intellectual property
  • Completed a law degree at Solent University
  • Spent a couple of winters in Austria as a ski instructor
  • Joined a niche IP firm & qualified into the contentious IP team
  • Joined Briffa in September 2019 to further develop and continue his IP focused practice
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Career Highlight

Sam’s career highlight, so far, was a domain dispute case. Sam acted for the respondent in WIPO domain name proceedings.

The complainant had sought to withdraw the claim but wanted to keep its right to pursue the claim at a later date. Our client, the respondent, who had owned the domain 15 years before the complainant wasn’t too happy about this.

Ultimately the respondent refused to allow the complainant to withdraw its complaint and requested a decision to be made as to the fate of the domain name. The respondent succeeded in defending the claim and the WIPO panel found that there “was no reasonable basis for Complainant’s Complaint”.

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“A domain name I own was the subject of a complaint filed with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). From the moment I spoke to Samuel O’Toole, I became more confident about our prospects of winning.

Sam drafted an amazing response to the claim and we eventually won the case (D2019-2738). We also achieved a successful decision of Reverse Domain Name Hijacking (RDNH) against the complainant.

I am absolutely delighted with the result. Sam was very knowledgeable and professional throughout the whole process, and great fun to work with too. I was not at all confident as this was my first ever legal case, but Sam’s reassuring, optimistic, down-to-earth approach and great sense of humour got me through it. Thank you also to Sam’s colleagues William, Margaret and Ceyda who I know also reviewed or worked on the case.

I have to say that the culture in Briffa drew me in from the beginning – everyone I spoke to, from whoever answers the phone to the accounts staff, are all very friendly but extremely professional. Whilst I really enjoyed working with Briffa, I hope I never have to recourse to Briffa for another legal case. But, I have used and will continue to use Briffa’s services for all my IP needs, such as trade mark registration. Thanks again Sam!”

– Dermot O’Halloran

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Written by Samuel

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