The new year ushered in a few more PCT Patent Prosecution Highway Pilot Programs (PCT-PPH), reducing the workload for cooperating patent offices and expediting examination for qualified applications.
The first two newly launched programs represent agreements between the Danish Patent and Trademark Office (DKPTO) and (1) the State Intellectual Property Office of the People’s Republic of China (SIPO) and (2) the Israel Patent Office (ILPO), effective January 1, 2013 and January 5, 2013, respectively. The third pilot PCT-PPH Program is between the National Board of Patents and Registration of Finland (NBPR) and SIPO, effective January 1, 2013.
Under the first two PCT-PPH Programs, faster patent examination would be available in the DKPTO on the basis of a PCT application with a positive written opinion from either the International Searching Authority (ISA) or the International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA), or a positive international preliminary report on patentability issued by SIPO or ILPO in its capacity as the ISA or IPEA.
Under the third PCT-PPH Program, patent examination can be fast-tracked in the NBPR if a positive written opinion or a positive international preliminary report on patentability is issued by SIPO in its capacity as the ISA or IPEA.
Interested in learning more about the PPH? Check out related articles on our blog.