Timber construction has experienced considerable progress in recent years. In such progress, apart from the implementation of new engineered timber products, the advancement of timber joints has played a significant role. The design procedures for timber connections in most design codes are based mainly on the yielding capacity of the fasteners using the European Yield Model (EYM). While the EYM theory provides accurate predictions for connections that fail in a ductile fashion, it does not take into account the failure of the connections due to the brittle rupture of wood as the consequence of fasteners group effect. Such a significant gap in the design of connections also applies to the New Zealand (NZS 3603) and Australian (AS 1720.1) timber design standards. A new design approach is presented which allows the practitioners to predict the connection capacity associated with different brittle wood failure mechanisms. An extensive testing regime has been conducted on high load-transfer capacity joints using timber rivets under longitudinal and transverse loadings on New Zealand Radiata Pine laminated veneer lumber (LVL) and glulam. The results verify the proposal and prove its reliability. A design guide was also developed which could eventually become a design clause in the next revision of the New Zealand timber design standard NZS 3603.