Are you ready to patent your innovative idea and protect your intellectual property? In this guide, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step procedure of obtaining a patent, ensuring that you safeguard and make your invention well-understood by patent authorities and potential investors.
Step 1: Documenting Your Invention
Before diving into the patent process, having a clear, detailed record of your invention is crucial. Start by gathering all the essential information about your invention, including:
i. Field of Invention: Describe the field your invention belongs to. Is it in technology, healthcare, or any other domain?
ii. Invention Description: Explain what your invention is in precise terms.
iii. Functionality: Provide a detailed explanation of how your invention works.
iv. Benefits: Highlight the advantages and potential applications of your invention.
Additionally, if you’ve conducted research and development, ensure you have comprehensive lab records duly signed and dated by you and the relevant authority. These records serve as crucial evidence in the patent application process.
Step 2: Illustrating Your Invention
Visual aids are often essential in patent applications. To convey the details of your invention effectively, you should include diagrams, drawings, and sketches. Design these graphic elements to clearly and concisely represent how your vision works. Remember that they are pivotal in making your patent application more understandable.
Step 3: Assessing Patentability
Not all inventions can be patented. According to the Indian Patent Act, particular inventions are not considered patentable. You need to ensure your invention meets specific criteria:
i. Novelty: Your invention must be new and not previously known or published.
ii. Non-Obviousness: It should be apparent to someone skilled in the relevant field.
iii. Industrial Applicability: Your invention must have practical and industrial applications.
Step 4: Patent Discovery
At this stage, you must determine whether your invention aligns with the patent criteria as per the Indian Patent Act. Carefully evaluating novelty, non-obviousness, and industrial applicability is essential. If your design satisfies these conditions, you’re on the right track.
Step 5: Filing a Patent Application
Depending on your progress in research and development, you can opt for a provisional application if you’re in the early stages. A provisional application offers several advantages, including:
i. Filing Date: It secures the date you initiated the patent process.
ii. 12-Month Window: You have 12 months to file the full specification.
iii. Cost-Efficiency: Provisional applications are often less expensive.
After filing a provisional application, you’ll have 12 months to compile all the necessary documents. Once you’ve gathered sufficient data and have prototypes and experimental results, you can file the complete specification. However, if you’re confident about your invention’s details, you can directly rub the full specification.
Step 6: Publication of the Application
Upon submitting the complete specification and patent application, the authorities schedule your application for publication. Usually, it is published 18 months after the initial filing. If you don’t want to wait for this period, you can request an early publication by paying the prescribed fee. This process accelerates the magazine and allows you to protect your invention sooner.
Step 7: Request for Examination
Your patent application undergoes scrutiny only after you request a formal examination (RFE). The patent examiner will evaluate your application against various patent eligibility criteria, including patent subject, newness, lack of clarity, inventory steps, industrial application, and enablement. The initial examination report, submitted to the Controller, often includes references to existing documents similar to your invention.
Step 8: Addressing Objections
It’s common for patent applicants to receive objections based on the examination report. The best approach is to review the examination report with a qualified patent professional or agent and respond to the complaints thoughtfully. Take this opportunity to demonstrate the novelty of your invention compared to prior art.
Step 9: Resolving Objections
Collaboration between the Controller and the patent applicant is crucial in resolving objections related to the invention or the application. During this stage, the inventor addresses concerns related to the novelty and inventive aspects of their vision compared to existing art.
Step 10: Grant of Patent
Your application is poised for a patent grant once you fulfil all patent prerequisites and successfully address any objections. The official announcement of the patent grant is published periodically in the Patent Journal.
By following this step-by-step procedure, you can navigate the patent application process effectively and increase the likelihood of securing your patent for your innovative invention. If you have any questions or need further assistance, please get in touch with us.
Questions and Answers for Procedure of Patent
1. How do I begin filing a patent in India?
- The process begins with filing a patent application with the Indian Patent Office.
2. What information is required for the patent application?
- You need to provide details of the invention, including its description, drawings, and claims.
3. How is the patent application examined in India?
- The patent application undergoes an examination to check for patentability criteria.
4. Can I request an expedited examination for my patent application?
- Yes, you can file a request for expedited examination with appropriate fees.
5. What is the significance of the patent search during examination?
- The patent search helps determine the invention’s novelty and inventive step.
6. What happens after the examination process?
- After examination, the patent office issues a First Examination Report (FER) with objections, if any.
7. How can I respond to objections raised in the First Examination Report?
- You can file a response addressing the objections raised in the FER within the stipulated time.
8. What is the role of the Controller of Patents in the process?
- The Controller of Patents is responsible for examining patent applications and granting patents.
9. What happens if my patent application is accepted?
- If your application meets all requirements, the patent office grants the patent, which is published.
10. Can third parties oppose my patent application?
- Yes, third parties can file pre-grant opposition to challenge the grant of a patent.
11. What is the typical duration for the grant of a patent in India?
- The time varies, but it generally takes a few years from filing to grant.
12. What is the term of a granted patent in India?
- The term of a patent is 20 years from the filing date.
13. Can I file an international patent application from India?
- You can file an international application under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT).
14. What is the significance of the PCT system?
- The PCT system allows for simplified international patent filing in multiple countries.
15. What rights does a patent grant to the inventor?
- A patent grants the inventor exclusive rights to make, use, and sell the invention for a specified period.