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Patent Prosecution in India

The Application : An application for a Patent is to be made in the format prescribed by the Patents Act and the Patent Rules. All applications are to be accompanied by a specification clearly telling the invention claimed. The following documents should accompany the application:
  • Application for grant of patent in Form 1;
  • Form 2 accompanied by two copies of the complete patent specification;
  • Two sets of the drawing figures, if any, one set of which should be in thick A-4 size white sheets;
  • Duly stamped power of attorney in Form 26 authorizing the agent;
  • Declaration of the inventorship signed by the applicant in Form 5;
  • Priority documents, if any, if not in English, English translation thereof;
  • Proof for the applicant's right to apply for patent.

To obtain a lodgment date, what is required is:
  • The Specification;
  • Name and address of the applicant;
  • Name(s) and addresse(s) of the Inventor(s); and
  • The priority details.

Form 1 must be signed by the inventors. However it could be signed by the agent at the time of lodgment and it can be substituted with a duly signed one within 3 months from the date of lodgment or at any time before acceptance of the complete specification. To claim priority from corresponding foreign filings, certified copies of the priority document should be filed. Upon filing a Patent Application, the Patent office issues an official filing receipt, which contains the Indian Patent Application Number assigned to the application.

The Applicant : The Applicant for a Patent can be either the true and first inventor or the assignee or legal representative of the true and the first inventor.

Publication : The Patents Amendment Act, 2002 brought into force Sections 11A and 11B concerning publication of applications. All patent applications will be published in the official gazette on the expiry of 18 months from the date of filing or the date of priority whichever is earlier. Applications in which a privacy direction is given under section 35 shall not be published.

Representation : When once the application is published, Any person can file a representation by way of opposition against the grant of patent. When a request for examination of the application has been filed, only then the representation shall be considered by the controller.

The Examination : The Patent Office will examine an application only if the applicant files a request for examination. The request for examination must be filed after the publication of the application but within 36 months from the date of priority or date of filing, whichever is earlier. The request can be filed by any interested person. Once the request is filed, the Patent Office will issue the First Examination Report. The Applicant must respond to the objections (if any) raised by the Examiner within the prescribed time lines. All procedural compliances must be met within 3 months from the date of receipt of the First Examination Report, or as may be prescribed. The remaining substantive objections raised by the Examiner should be removed and the application must be re-filed to put the application in order for grant within 6 months from the date of the First Examination Report. An extension of time upto 3 months is available. However, this extension can be availed only before the expiry of said 6 months period and in circumstances beyond the control of the applicant.

Grant : Once the applicant complies with all the requirements under the patent rules and Patents Act, the Patent Office will issue a notice regarding Intimation of Grant. Thereafter, the Letters Patent shall be issued to the applicant.

Opposition : By interested parties, The granted application shall remain open for objection for 12 months from the date of publication of the patent in the Patent Office Journal.

Renewal : A renewal fee is to be paid at the expiration of two years from the date of Patent and before the expiration of all succeeding years. A patent becomes ineffective if the renewal fee is not paid in time.
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