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US IP Trends: Global Patent Protection in 2010

US IP Trends: Global Patent Protection in 2010

Our survey results are in! And it looks like belts have been tightened as far as they will go… with IP budgets now stabilizing for 2010.  72% of respondents (US companies, primarily small to medium-sized enterprises) plan to maintain or increase foreign patent filings for 2010.  This is a bit of bright news after a […]

UPDATE: Change Proposed in USPTO

UPDATE: Change Proposed in USPTO

It seems that the deferred examination fee policy currently in effect in the Japanese Patent Office has caught the attention of the USPTO. The USPTO has just proposed a similar change that would effectively provide a 12-month extension to the provisional patent application period. Currently, a nonprovisional application can be filed without filing fees or […]

Eastern Migration: Patent Filing and Protection in China

Eastern Migration: Patent Filing and Protection in China

As one of the largest filers of PCT national stage applications in the world, inovia often observes firsthand global trends occurring in the foreign filing industry. One noteworthy development in the past decade is the emergence of China as both a major source and destination for patent applications. For instance, China was the top national […]

More 1 April 2010 EPO Rule Changes: Amendments at European Regional Stage Entry

More 1 April 2010 EPO Rule Changes: Amendments at European Regional Stage Entry

In view of the high excess claims fees that apply to European applications, it’s common for PCT applicants to reduce the number of claims on file at regional phase entry to Europe. In the past, the EPO has taken a surprisingly (in my view) laissez faire approach to the format of such claim amendments. Simply […]

Patent Office Fee Changes – Two Opposite Approaches

Patent Office Fee Changes – Two Opposite Approaches

Proposed Changes in the USPTO In 2009, the USPTO faced both an 8% budget decrease from the previous year ($1.43 billion vs. $1.31 billion) and the pressure of reducing an ever-growing backlog of applications.    In response, the USPTO has three proposed plans to increase its funding. a 15% increase for nearly all fees, allow […]

PCT Filings in 2009

PCT Filings in 2009

Overall Decrease in PCT Filings The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) recently announced its statistics for PCT filings in 2009, and it’s clear that international patent filings have not been immune to the global economic downturn. Overall, the number of PCT filings dropped by 4.5% (155,900 PCTs filed in 2009 vs. 164,000+ in 2008). Additionally, […]

European Patent Office: Changes to Multiple Independent Claims Practice

European Patent Office: Changes to Multiple Independent Claims Practice

We recently gave a brief summary of the impending 1 April 2010 changes to European rules. New Rule 62A: Independent Claims Today, we’re going to go into a little more detail about the changes to management of independent claims in Europe under the new regime. Current practiceUnder current European practice, typically only one independent claim […]

“What countries does Europe cover?”

“What countries does Europe cover?”

We get this question fairly often. Sometimes clients (even experienced patent attorneys) make the mistake of assuming the EPO is simply the patent office that caters to the countries of “Europe”. It’s actually a bit more complicated than that. Without any additional context, the word “Europe” is generally used as shorthand for the European Union […]

5 Reasons to file in New Zealand

5 Reasons to file in New Zealand

(This is the first of a series of posts about particular countries.) Five good reasons for filing a New Zealand Patent application: 1. New Zealand is a relatively inexpensive country in which to get patent protection. 2. The New Zealand Patent Office provides fast, good quality examination. You can often use what you learn during […]

April 1, 2010: Substantial changes to EPO procedures

April 1, 2010: Substantial changes to EPO procedures

As you may know, the EPO generally implements fee and procedural changes on 1 April each year. I like to think of it as their way of making sure everyone has a little fun every April Fools’ Day. This year there are a number of important procedural changes that will apply to PCT applications entering […]

Using the PCT – That’s more expensive, isn’t it?

Using the PCT – That’s more expensive, isn’t it?

In theory, PCT application fees should make the PCT route to foreign patent filing more expensive (overall) than direct Paris Convention filings. However, reality isn’t always that simple. First, the additional 18 months the PCT buys allow better assessment of an invention’s likely commercial value. Second, the International Search Report (ISR) issued during this period […]