Why a Patent Search Needs An Expert

Last Updated at: Oct 30, 2020
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India has complied with its obligations under the Agreement on Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights (“TRIPS”) to align itself with global IPR jurisdictions. The Budget 2020 also referred to improved protection for Intellectual Property Rights (including trade secrets, patents, and copyrights) through a dedicated policy.

 

To grant a patent for a product or process, the same has to be novel, possess an industrial application and be an extension of an invention, which already prevails. In India, it will take a couple of years to grant a patent as the owner gets a 20-year advantage over others. So, it needs serious examination while applying for a patent.

For a product or process to be granted a patent, it needs to be novel, has industrial application and not be an obvious extension of an existing invention. It takes two years in India to be granted a patent, because it gives its owner a serious 20-year advantage over rivals, and, therefore, needs serious examination. Given how much time it takes, you don’t want to make an application for a product or process that already exists, in some form. Therefore, you need to conduct a Patent or Prior Art Search.

Below you’ll find the list of services that will walk you through the need for the service, the eligibility, documentation procedure and benefits. Our experienced team members are there to guide you and complete the process at ease.

 

Now, some inventors believe they could do this themselves, without the help of a patent attorney. What’s in it for them is Rs. 7000 to Rs. 50,000 they’d save in patent lawyer fees. But there’s also every chance that this saving would result in a botched up patent application that causes you to lose time and effort into building what already exists.

Patent Your Innovation Right Now

Why a Patent Search

The Patent Office grants thousands of patents of each year, looks at several more applications, and also deals with hundreds of thousands of provisional patent application. Given these numbers over time, there are likely to be applications similar to yours. In one way or another, your application depends on the details contained in these applications. The Patent Office does have an online database of all of these, where you can search by several parameters.

  • The available parameters are:
    Title
    Abstract
    Claims
    Description
    Application Number
    Patent Number
    Applicant Name
    Inventor Name
    Inventor Country

Importance of Patent Search

  • A search for a patent would make one realize an invention’s patentability or extent of patentability. Inventors are often not well versed in the scope of patentability covered by the law
  • Your patent agent/attorney must know the available prior art for drawing up the claims for patent. A patentability quest provides an idea of what patent rights can be pursued and what falls within the scope of the prior art. Thus, one can understand the strength of the innovation from the search study, and therefore draft claims that do not infringe certain patents or fall within the prior art.
  • The innovation may often not be original and the search for patentability may disclose patents/inventions similar to the innovation. In such cases, one may create new ideas and refine the invention to make it patentable by reading the prior art literature.
  • One can recognize the intensity or weakness of the present invention by understanding the literature present in one’s area of invention. This in effect helps draft a better patent application and makes it less vulnerable to Patent Office rejections. On the other side, it will also assist in determining whether to continue with filing or forsake the applications.
  • The search for patents can also reveal certain companies that are keen to obtain patents in the technology field related to your invention. In such cases, it gives you the lead on which to contact companies to license your invention.
  • Often, we can see that few existing patents already available in the database have not been commercialized. If you analyze the patent search, it may be possible to see why commercialization is not viable to help you determine if you intend to continue filing the patent application.

Point to note about Patent Search

One must note that the applicant needs to describe their entire invention whilst applying for a patent. Their application will be considered prior art, available to anyone, even though their patent was denied. Quite frequently this will lead to their opponents being granted access to the former’s hard work. A patent review would be useful to prevent such a situation. While one’s invention is not patentable in the light of the patent law, one can still use the invention as a business secret and give it to others to make a profit. An assessment of patentability would help investors know whether a patent application would warrant the costs incurred.

What does a Patent Attorney do?

Each search, particularly for popular industries, returns several results. As an industry expert, you would be able to tell if these are similar to your invention. But a patent attorney will still be helpful. The reasons for this are that patent attorneys know their way around the patent database. They are aware of all the terms to search for when you’re applying. They can tell when you are capable of interpreting the similarities between your invention etc. Also, they will be able to advise you on whether you can frame your application. Their advice will help you to understand how it is different from similar ones.

Does this mean that you hire a patent attorney each time you’re working on an idea? Not at all. You should do a preliminary prior art search for yourself before you get started. You should be able to tell if there is an obvious clash between your application and an existing one.

 

It is possible to do it sans a patent attorney as it will help you save the money that you pay them. But remember that these savings that you intend to make might end up in a botched up patent application that causes you a lot of time and effort later on. So, always follow the suggestions given by those at the Patent Office.