IP EXPERTS FORRESTERS QUESTION THE NEED FOR “SUPERFAST” PATENTS…
Government recently consulted on plans to bring in a new “superfast” patent process, whereby people will be able to patent their ideas in as little as 90 days.
Currently, UK patent applications usually take between two and five years to grant. However, Chris Bond, senior associate at Forresters, who have offices in Birmingham, said that although the consultation was welcome, there are other avenues people can go down to speed up the patent process without incurring the fees Government propose as part of its plans.
“What some people don’t realise is that they can already speed up the patent process without incurring additional costs,” said Chris. “It is already possible to speed up the grant of a UK patent application by requesting accelerated processing. To qualify for accelerated processing the applicant must supply an adequate reason – for example they need a granted patent to close a business transaction – which usually means that they can get a patent granted in less than a year.”
Under the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) consultation on the “superfast” processing service, a fee would be due on top of standard costs, which is estimated to be between £3,500 and £4,000.
“That’s just too much for most people, and therefore not necessarily good for innovation in Birmingham and the West Midlands,” said Chris. “Whilst it’s good that they’re looking at speeding up the process, in reality that would only be helping a handful of applications.
“People often need to speed up the process for a number of reasons – for example they might suspect infringement or need to push it through quickly to help secure investment. They can already seek accelerated processing. We can walk them through what can be a very complicated process with a minimum of fuss whilst keeping a tight rein on cost,” he said.
Forresters handles all aspects of intellectual property, working with companies to protect their innovations from a commercial perspective.
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