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A patent is a legal right enabling the owner to stop someone else making use of an invention. Once granted a patent will provide the owner the exclusive right to prevent others from making, using, selling, importing or distributing the patented invention without permission for a period of up to 20 years from filing (assuming the renewal fees continue to be paid).
So far so good, right? But what happens when a patent application doesn’t make it to grant within the period of 20 years from filing? What happens then? And why would you still want to prosecute a patent application for 20 years anyway? (more…)
This rule change follows a consultation that ran during March 2013. Although the consultation can still be accessed on the EPO website (here) it is noticeable that the EPO has not published a summary of responses to their “Completed Consultations” page.
Recently however Heli Pihlajamaa, Director of Patent Law at the European Patent Office, spoke in a live webinar session on the new rules and links to the presentation and the video of the seminar have appeared on the EPO website (though for some reason the link to the video recording has subsequently been taken down). (more…)
Following IPcopy’s post last week regarding the amendment to divisional deadline rules, ipcopymark reached out to the UK Intellectual Property Office to seek clarification over why the rule was being changed and whether the new rule will change any procedures at the UKIPO going forward.
The response from the UKIPO confirmed that there is not intended to be any change to the practice of filing divisional applications at the UKIPO. However, it was confirmed that incoming Rule 19 is being introduced to address a perceived flaw in the drafting of the current Rule 19 in which it could be argued that the two-month divisional period would be reset following the issuance of every communication under Section 18(4) Patents Act 1977. Whether or not you interpret current Rule 19 in this way, the incoming Rule 19 closes this potential loophole.
As mentioned on Monday by IPKat, the rules regarding time limits for filing divisional patent applications from UK applications are being changed.
Under the current system, if a notice of compliance under Section 18(4) Patents Act 1977 is received, the applicant would have two months within which to file any divisionals. The two month period is being maintain under the amended rule, however, there will be an additional requirement to meet. Namely, that the parent must not have received any objections in an examination report.
This means that if the parent was found to meet the requirements for grant after more than one examination, there would be no opportunity to file divisionals once the notice of compliance is received.
As noted earlier on IPcopy, Rule 36 EPC, which was amended in 2010 to introduce 24 month time limits for filing divisional European patent applications from a parent European patent application, is to be amended from 1 April 2014 such that the 24 month deadline rule is removed and the procedure reverts back to the pre-April 2010 arrangements. As well as the change to Rule 36 EPC, an amendment to Rule 38 was proposed to provide “for an additional fee as part of the filing fee in the case of a divisional application filed in respect of any earlier application which is itself a divisional application”.
Administrative Council decision of 13 December 2013 (here) has been published on the EPO website and, as well as detailing other fee changes due to come into effect on 1 April 2014, confirms the level of the additional fee that will be payable on 2nd and higher generation divisional applications from 1 April 2014. The full list of additional fees for divisional applications, which ranges from 210 Euros to 840 Euros, is noted below
As noted earlier on IPcopy, Rule 36 EPC, which was amended in 2010 to introduce 24 month time limits for filing divisional European patent applications from a parent European patent application, was made the subject of an EPO consultation. The consultation closed on 5 April 2013 but the EPO website has not yet been updated with any details of the responses received.
However, a number of sources (1, 2, 3) are now reporting that Rule 36 is to be amended from 1 April 2014 such that the 24 month deadline rule is removed and the procedure reverts back to the pre-April 2010 arrangements. So far there has been no official announcement from the EPO.
Rule 36 EPC was amended in 2010 to introduce 24 month time limits for filing divisional European patent applications from a parent European patent application. One purpose of the rule amendment was to address the issue of precautionary divisional filings that were filed to avoid adverse decisions.
An online consultation, with a closing date of 5 April 2013, recently popped up on the EPO’s website (here) announcing that the EPO is going to take another look at Rule 36 EPC and the time limits for filing divisional applications.