PCT Patent explanation

Patent Co-operation Treaty  February 8, 2013 – 07:45 am

What is it?

A two stage procedure which allows an applicant to start the patent process in over 140 countries by filing a single application.

Stage one – International Phase – the application is searched, published, and an opinion offered on patentability.

Stage two – National Phase – you select the countries who want protection in and go through their national examination procedure to grant.

Why do it?

Three reasons – cost, cost & cost.

Filing in multiple countries individually is expensive; filing a PCT delays the date you have to pay those fees by a minimum of 18 months (Sweeping Generalisation).

For a relatively modest cost, you can obtain a view on patentability from a major countries patent examination team to give you confidence (or not) before committing to individual national applications.

Instead of filing multiple applications, paying multiple search fees and paying multiple Attorney firms, you only pay once.

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