Patents are techno-legal instruments that give exclusive rights to manufacture, use, sell, or import a product or service to the patent applicant. Usually, patents are sought to create a monopoly of a specific invention in the name of the patent-holder. A request for a patent, in most cases, is received from:
- Business Owner with an idea or product to patent
- Research scientist with a new concept or formula to patent
- Professional with new ideas of software to patent
- Master or Ph.D. holder with a research project
People often face a situation where they are not sure whether their idea is patentable or not. Just like a tree is built by a seed, a patent’s seed is the “idea” construed.
When you can successfully develop your idea with full details, technicalities, and diagrams; and your idea is capable of solving a problem in the society, it is termed as an invention.
An invention is Patentable if the following three requirements (as mentioned in Section 3 of the Patents Act, 1970) are met:
- It should be new,
- It should be non-obvious,
- It should be capable of industrial use.
Thus, from an idea, we move to invention and then finally, to a patentable invention.
Why to Patent Your Invention?
Patenting your idea has the following advantages:
- You can own that invention alone for as long as 20 years,
- You can use your patent to build a business,
- You can Rent/license your patent, or
- You can completely sell it to others to earn money.
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Patent Registration Method
Registration of a patent involves a lot of technicalities which is why it is suggested that a Patent attorney/expert should be hired for the same.
Before patenting your invention, you should have an idea of the Cost involved. There are two elements of Cost:
- Government Fees (For forms, requests, and renewals)
- Professional charges (For patent professional, patent agent/attorney)
An approximate cost of Rs.55, 000 to Rs.1.5 lacks is incurred. (Assuming you hired a patent professional). The cost may also vary according to the number of objections raised.
The process of Registration of Patents is as follows:
Step 1: Invention Disclosure
You should be able to put your invention in an organized, detailed manner. It should be such that a person dealing in that area of interest can understand it and conclude that the invention will help solve a problem.
Step 2: Is your Invention patentable?
To know whether your invention is novel, a Patentability search is required. For this, you should hire a professional who can search whether an invention of this sort exists or not, and if it doesn’t, it is patentable (assuming it meets the criteria of Section 3 of the Patents Act).
A period of seven days and professional fees of approximately Rs. 12,000 is incurred.
Step 3: Write and file a Patent Application
Writing a patent application requires Experience and legal and technical knowledge. For this step, a Patent expert should be contacted as he would know how a patent application can be framed to attract the least objections. Two types of Patents Applications exist:
- Provisional Patents Application:
It is made when Research is in its early stage. It is granted for 12 months after which a Complete Patents Application is to be filed. It can be obtained within 7 days. The total cost involved would be Rs.15000-25000.patents
- Complete Patent Application:
When a Complete patent application is made, it has to include all details of the invention in depth. How the three criteria mentioned above are met has to be shown too. This process may take 15-20 days and an amount of Rs. 25,000-40,000
Step 4: Publication of Patent Application
Application is published after 18 months of its submission. For Early publication, additional fees can be submitted with Form 9. If this is done, publication is done in a month.p
Step 5: Request for Examination (RFE)
Patents Application is examined at the Patents Office. RFE is filed along with the application for patents. This goes to the patent examiner who prepares a First Examination Report which contains all objections raised in the patent’s application.
These objections are then communicated to the patent applicants.
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Step 6: Respond to objections to patents
The objections raised in the First Examination Report need to be answered. An expert’s help should be sought at this stage.
Step 7: Grant of Patents
Finally, when all objections are met, the patent is published in the Journal and is granted to the Applicant.