IP or intellectual property is indeed an intangible property that can provide the world with both a life-changing invention and also help the creator or his firm develop financially. Do you know a patent is a legal privilege granted by a country’s government to an inventor? It offers you the legal authority to prevent others from copying your invention. Patent protection is granted for 20 years. The basic goal is to protect the ideas and inventions that are made and, as a result, promote more innovation.
A patent is just a privilege or right awarded by the government to a person or firm that prevents others from creating, utilizing, selling, and importing the patented invention or procedure without permission. The first thing an inventor does to prevent his or her invention from being abused is to file a patent or register a patent. Patent filing is indeed a hard process, but it can be simplified with the correct legal counsel. The cost of getting a patent registered in India is increasing significantly, increasing the necessity for new and revised laws. The Patent Act of 1970 governs patents, and the government also gave the Patent (Amendment) Rule of 2021. The government wants to encourage society’s innovation and the development of new technology.
Patent Registration and its Process
Patent registration can be done simply at the Indian Patent Office, via a national phase PCT application, or via a normal application. The patent registration office will charge an additional 10% fee for internet applications. Here is a step-by-step list of what you need to do to get a patent for your idea, invention, or other intellectual property (IP).
Step 1: To see whether the invention qualifies for a Patent
One must first determine whether your idea is patentable before beginning the patent filing process. This implies you should look to see if someone else has received a patent for the same invention/idea or not the one you’re working on. In-depth patentability research can help one determine whether they have a likelihood of obtaining a patent. Subject matter that is not patentable is defined under Section 3 of the Patents Act. As a result, the inventor should be certain that the invention doesn’t somehow fall into any of the non-patentable categories while conceiving it.
Step 2: Searching and Drafting Applications for Patents
The innovator must conduct a patentability search after gaining clarity on the innovation. This is significant since it will aid in determining whether or not the invention is unique. The Patents Act requires that all inventions meet the novelty requirements. After completing a thorough search and compiling a patentability report, the patentability opinions can be considered. The patentability search discovers the closest potential prior art (publicly available) relevant to the invention, and based on the findings, an opinion on the patentable subject matter of that invention can be given, which could be good, bad, or impartial. The efficient drafting of patent application filing is the next step. Claims, Background, Description, Drawings (if there are any), Abstract, and Summary are all elements of the application. To achieve successful disclosure of the invention, all of these components must be carefully prepared. When crafting the application, it is recommended that extreme caution and precision be used.
Step 3: Patent Application Filing Process
This is when the real work begins. Following the writing of the patent application, it can be filed only with the government patent office using Form 1 as the application form. The patent filing number would be printed on the receipt. If the innovation is still in its early stages, a provisional patent application might be filed under Form 2. The advantage of registering a provisional application is that it allows you to secure a previous filing date, which is important in the patent industry. In addition, one has 12 months to submit the entire specification. For start-ups and small businesses, the Form 28 application form must be utilized to apply for patents.
Step 4: Patent Application’s Publication
The application generally gets published within 18 months from the date of patent filing if the complete specification is filed. There are no particular requirements for publication from the applicant. If the applicant doesn’t wish to wait until the 18-month period has passed, he or she can file Form 9 with the required fees and request early publication. In most cases, the patent application is usually published one month after the request for early publication is made.
Step 5: Examining the Application for a Patent
Unlike publication, the examination isn’t just an automated procedure; the applicant must request that the patent application be examined by the patent office. Under Form 18, the usual request should be issued within 48 months after the date of the application’s filing. Upon receiving such a request, the controller assigns the application to the patent examiner, who reviews it using several patentability criteria, such as novelty, non-obviousness, inventive step, and industrial applicability, and issues the First Examination Report to the applicant (FER). The examiner goes over each of his objections in great detail. This could add another 6 to 9 months to the application process. In the case of patents, examiner objections are extremely common. If the inventor has to make revisions to his or her objection, he or she can submit Form 4 to obtain a time extension.
Step 6: Respond to the Application’s Objections
The applicant must respond to the patent office’s objection in the form of a First Examination Report. The applicant is required to respond to the objection expressed within the examination report in writing. The applicant might show that the invention is patentable and try to disprove the entire objection. If necessary, a physical court hearing or video conferencing might be ordered.
Step 7: Granting of a Patent
Following the resolution of all objections raised, the application will be submitted for a grant once it has been determined to meet all patentability conditions, and the applicant will be given the patent. The patent grant is announced in the patent journal, which is published regularly. Any interested individual can file a post-grant opposition by submitting a notice of opposition to the controller within 12 months of the date of issuance of the patent award.
NOTE! – Getting the Patent Renewed: The patent holder must additionally pay an annual renewal fee to keep his patent active. In India, you can extend the life of the patent for a maximum of 20 years from the day it was first filed.
In the last few years, the procedure of registering a patent has advanced significantly. The Patent (Amendment) Regulations, 2021, would also encourage academic institutions to file new patents to encourage the development and commercialization of new, creative technologies.
Legal Intern, LawDiktat
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- Rachit Garg, et al. “What You Need to Know about Patent Registration Laws in India.” IPleaders, 28 Mar. 2022, https://blog.ipleaders.in/what-you-need-to-know-about-patent-registration-laws-in-india/
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