A patent is a registered agreement between an inventor and a country.
Patent System Information
- A Patent allows you the legal protection for your invention.
- Only you, the patent owner, can use, manufacture or sell your invention or consent to others doing so, by way of a licence or franchise.
- Your invention must be new or novel and useful – indeed it must work and it must have a practical purpose.
You must get the correct legal advice before telling anyone of your idea or you may lose the right to register it as a patent.
Why Should I Get A Patent?
- A patent will protect your invention and prevent others trying to patent your invention.
- If someone else lodges your idea as patent before you, then they can seek damages against you even if you are the true inventor. If another person patents it before you then they can sue you.
- A patent is your Intellectual property and has value that can be sold or licensed.
- Without patenting your idea, you could lose out.
Are There Different Types of Patent In Australia?
There are two types – a standard patent and an innovation patent.
Standard patents offer the full allowable protection. Innovation patents offer a shorter period of protection.
A Standard Patent – Valid for 20 years and protects inventions and your application undergoes a substantial examination process before grant.
An Innovation Patent – Valid for 8 years and protects innovations or less complex inventions. Does not automatically undergo substantial examination before grant.
What’s a provisional patent application?
A provisional patent establishes a new invention date. A provisional patent in Australia lasts 12 months in which time you can create a full patent application. This can be time to build a working prototype, create the necessary diagrams and photographs and confirm the product claims to be used in the full patent. Customer validation of the product in terms of willing to buy can be confirmed.
How long does it take to obtain a provisional patent?
Before applying for a provisional patent you need to establish you have a sufficiently unique idea compared with existing patents. Perform a patent search in the market countries of interest. Also search for existing similar products, publications, scientific journals like Google Scholar. Legal opinions are needed after the search to see if a patent is suitable. Provisional patent writing may take 7-14 days. Then the patent application filing is about 2 days.
Why are patents important for invention and innovation?
Patents protect your idea during product commercialisation. This allows time for business creation, business infrastructure, business staffing and scaling up products and services to you customer segments. You have 20 years to reap the benefits.
Is it possible to extend/increase the life of Patent?
Patents have annual renewal fees for the life of the patent. Standard patents can last up to 20 years while innovation patents last 8 years.
What is the difference between IP law and Patent law?
Intellectual Property is a product of your mind that can include inventions, trade mark, design and brand. Patent Law refers to inventions, business processes, computer hardware/software and unique genetic materials.
What Can I Do If I Have Just Made Improvements to An Established Product?
No-one is going to re-invent the wheel. So, most inventions are just improvements or additions to what is already out there. i.e It involves an inventive step.
What Comes Next?
At this stage it is best to see professional advice. Call our office for a confidential appointment.
We work with you and our team of Patent Attorneys to determine the best course of action. If that means applying for a patent, then a patent application will be prepared based on your descriptions, drawings and photographs.
A patent application is a complex document and should only be prepared by the most experienced Patent Attorneys.
The Patent Act consists of a series of documents including Intellectual Property Laws.
The patent application is submitted to the patent office for review by the patent examiner. There are fees associated with this process. The examination process is a variable length in time.
If you want to market your idea overseas then you should obtain patents in those marketplaces with a relevant international patent. There is a Patent Cooperation Treaty PCT process to then apply for up to 151 countries. The standard documentation can be used to test if you can patent in other countries.
What happens after a patent is granted?
A patent can be used to build or extend your business. Joint Ventures can be used to help with scaling your business. Licencing can be used with business partners to collect royalties. International expansion can be pursued using patents in target market countries.
Phone or email us to set up your free initial consultation with us.
Having been around for over 20 years, we understand that you may have lots of questions. Our aim is to assist you in minimizing the time & money you spend in protecting your invention and trying to achieve market entry.