A patent gives its owner an enforceable monopoly right of up to 20 years duration (or 8 years for an Australian innovation patent) to exploit a device, substance, method or process that is new, useful and inventive.
The patent right is based upon a patent specification that describes the invention and includes a set of claims that defines the scope of monopoly protection being sought. The claims are a series of statements setting out the minimum features or steps of the invention in a clear and concise manner.
Importantly, the claimed invention must be new at the time of filing – therefore any earlier publication or public use (including commercial use) of the invention prior to filing will normally prevent valid patent protection. There are limited exceptions to the above general rule so if you have publicised your invention in any manner then please seek immediate advice from one of our patent attorneys.
Sometime after filing a patent application, it will be examined by a Patent Examiner and, in most cases, one or more reports will issue. Each report must be dealt with for the application to be accepted and the patent granted. Dealing with these examination reports is one of the important roles of your patent attorney (along with drafting of the patent specification). Your patent attorney’s task is to ensure that the scope of monopoly protection of your patent is not overly narrowed by the examination process.
It is important to remember that a patent does not guarantee commercial success; a great amount of work is needed to take an idea from concept to the marketplace. Inadequate attention to effective business planning can lead to commercial failure of the invention, regardless of the strength of the patent.
Madderns patent services include:
- Developing a patent protection strategy tailored to your requirements
- Advising on the patentability of your invention including conducting searches
- Preparing patent specifications and associated drawings in a broad ranges of technologies ranging from life sciences to electronics and communications (see our technology groups)
- Filing of patent applications and prosecuting these applications through to grant
- Obtaining overseas patent protection
- Competitor monitoring and oppositions
- Infringement and validity advice
- Patent portfolio management
- Litigation support in relation to Court proceedings involving patent enforcement and challenges to patent validity
Our Client Workbench provides access to their own (IP) portfolio and accounting information
Renewal of patents is dealt with by our strategic partner CPA Global