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Patent

What is a Patent?

Patents protect inventions and improvements to existing inventions.
Patent is a monopoly right granted by the Government to exclude others from exploiting or using a particular invention. This exclusive monopoly granted by a Patent is provided in return for the inventor disclosing the details of the invention to the public. Therefore, the patent is a monopoly right which offers exclusivity to the patentee to exploit the invention for 20 years after which it falls to the public domain.
While filing a patent for your invention, there are several critical aspects to be followed especially in drafting the claims, which define the scope of the invention. Drafting patent specification is an art by itself, and requires the expertise of skilled professionals in this field.

Requirement for filing patent application in India

Ordinary Application

  • Name, Address and Nationality of applicant(s)
  • Name, Address and Nationality of inventor(s)
  • Complete Specification [or provisional specification if Provisional Application needs to be filed]
  • Description, Claims, Abstract & Drawings, if any
  • Details of all corresponding foreign applications, including application number, date of filing and current status

Convention Application

  • Name, Address and Nationality of applicant(s)
  • Name, Address and Nationality of inventor(s)
  • Complete Specification including Description, Claims, Abstract & Drawings, if any
  • Priority claim details (Priority date, Country and Application number), Certified copy of priority document (if not filed at International Bureau), Verified English translation of priority document (may submit later)
  • Details of all corresponding foreign applications, including application number, date of filing and current status

PCT National Phase Application in India

  • Name, Address and Nationality of applicant(s)
  • Name, Address and Nationality of inventor(s)
  • Complete Specification including Claims, Abstract & Drawings, if any
  • If the PCT application is in a language other than English, a verified English translation of the PCT specification is required.
  • CT Application Details (International Application Number & Date)
  • Details of Priority application (if applicable)
    1. Priority date, Country and Application number
    2. Certified copy of priority document (if not filed at International Bureau)
    3. Verified English translation of priority document (can be filed later)
  • Details of all corresponding foreign applications, including application number, date of filing and current status
  • Other Documents (if applicable)
    1. Particulars of Amendments made to specification/claims during the International Phase (Verified English translation)
    2. Corrections or changes made at the International phase (Form PCT/IB/306)

Types of Patent Applications

Provisional Application

A provisional application is a temporary application which is filed when the invention is not finalized and is still under experimentation.

Advantages of filing a Provisional Application

  • Applicant gets 12 months’ time to fully develop the invention and ascertain its market potential.
  • Helps to establish “priority” right over the invention.
  • Enables the applicant to use the term “patent pending” on their product.
  • Less expensive to prepare and file the application.
  • Enables the applicant to file International applications and claim priority within 12 months.
However, in order for the patent to be granted, a provisional application must be followed by a complete specification within 12 months. Moreover, the provisional application should be sufficiently detailed and must be drafted very carefully to ensure that the priority rights are secured for your invention.

Ordinary Application or Non Provisional Application

An application for patent filed in the Patent Office without claiming any priority of application made in a convention country or without any reference to any other application under process in the office is called an ordinary application. An ordinary application must be accompanied with a complete specification and claims.

Convention Application

An application for patent filed in the Patent Office, claiming a priority date based on the same or substantially similar application filed in one or more of the convention countries, is called a convention application. In order to get convention status, an applicant should file the application in the Indian Patent Office within 12 months from the date of first filing of a similar application in the convention country.

PCT International Application

A PCT Application is an international application governed by the Patent Cooperation Treaty, and can be validated in upto 142 countries.

Advantages of filing a PCT Application

  • A single international patent application can be filed in order to seek protection for an invention in up to 142 countries throughout the world.
  • The priority date obtained by filing a PCT application is internationally recognized, and has an effect in each of the countries designated.
  • It gives the application 30/31 months to enter into various countries from the international filing date or the priority date, and therefore gives the applicant more time to assess the viability of the invention.
  • Delays the expenses associated with applying for a patent in various countries.
  • Provides an International Search Report citing prior art, which gives an indication to the applicant whether the invention is novel and innovative.
  • Provides an option for requesting an International Preliminary Examination Report, the report containing an opinion on the patentability of the invention.
  • • The International Search Report and International Preliminary Examination Report, allows the applicant to make more informed choices early in the patent process, and to amend the application to deal with any conflicting material, before the major expenses of the national phase of the patent process begin. It also gives the applicant a fair idea on the patentability of the invention before incurring charges for filing and prosecuting the application in each country.

PCT National Phase Application

When an international application is made according to PCT designating India, an applicant can file the national phase application in India within 31 months from the international filing date or the priority date (whichever is earlier).

Patent of Addition

When an applicant feels that he has come across an invention which is a slight modification of the invention for which he has already applied for or has obtained patent, the applicant can go for patent of addition if the invention does not involve a substantial inventive step. There is no need to pay separate renewal fee for the patent of addition during the term of the main patent and it expires along with the main patent.

Divisional Application

When an application made by applicant claims more than one invention, the applicant on his own or to meet the official objection may divide the application and file two or more applications, as applicable for each of the inventions. This type of application, divided out of the parent one, is called a Divisional Application. The priority date for all the divisional applications will be same as that claimed by the Parent Application (Ante-dating).

IPR