Understanding the Patent Prosecution Procedure in Pakistan
What is the procedure of Patent grant in Pakistan?
The procedure for the grant of a patent in Pakistan is as follows:
Stage: 1- Patent application filing in Pakistan:
An application for the grant of patent can be filed in Pakistan along with the prescribed fees at the appropriate patent office.
When the Patent is published in Pakistan?
Stage: 2- Patent Publication in Pakistan:
An application for patent is not open to public for 18 months from the date of filing or date of priority. As per section 21 of the Patents Ordinance, 2000, on the acceptance of a complete specification, the Controller shall give a notice to the applicant and advertise the application, specification, and priority documents, if any, in the Official Gazette. After the advertisement, the application is open for public inspection.
Further, as per section 22 of Patents Ordinance, 2000, after the acceptance of an application, the applicant has the like privileges and rights as if a patent for the invention has been sealed/granted on the date of the acceptance of the application. However, the applicant is not be entitled to institute any proceedings for infringement until the patent has been sealed.
How to file a request for Patent Examination in Pakistan?
Stage: 3- Patent Examination in Pakistan:
In Pakistan an examination of a patent application is carried out automatically without a formal request being made. As per section 16 of the Patents Ordinance, 2000, the Controller shall refer to an examiner every application in respect of which a complete specification has been filed for making him a report in regard to the patentability of the invention and whether other requirements of the Ordinance and rules has been complied with.
The first examination report is generally issued within 14-18 months of the filing date of application in Pakistan.
What is the time period to file the response of Office Action?
Stage: 4-Office action response in Pakistan
Normally all the objections must be met within 12 months from the date of first examination report. If the applicant does not comply with the objection, the application will be abandoned. Upon complying the requirements the application is published in the Official Journal.
When a pre-grant opposition can be filed in Pakistan?
How to file pre-grant opposition in Pakistan?
Stage: 5:- Pre-grant opposition in Pakistan
As per Section 23 of the Patent Ordinance 2000 (amended in 2002), at any time, within four months from the date of advertisement of the acceptance of a complete specification, any person may give notice of opposition to the Controller to the grant of Patent on limited grounds.
What is the term of a Patent in Pakistan?
Stage: 6:- Grant of Patent in Pakistan
A patent is granted on the request of the applicant in a prescribed form that the complete specification of the application is accepted and no opposition is filed against it, or the decision of the opposition filed is in favor of the applicant. The patent is then published in the Office Gazette.
The term for patents in Pakistan is 20 years from the date of filing of the application for the patent. It is the responsibility of the patentee to maintain an issued patent by paying the annuities until the patent expires. After 20 years term the invention claimed in the patent falls into the public domain.
Sources: Patents Ordinance, 2000
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