IPO to act as International Searching Authority and International Preliminary Examining Authority

India has seen some major reforms in intellectual Property (IP) domain over a decade or so. Talking about Patents in IP, the most technical and specialized domain, few of the initial milestones were amendment of Patents Act in 2005 to meet TRIPS obligations, followed by a massive reconstruction program including introduction of IT enabled efficient system and launching e-filing facilities for both patent and trademark. Now IPO has been granted another recognition, which would enhance the recognition at world level.

From 15th October, Indian Patent Office (IPO) has started functioning as International Searching Authority (ISA) and International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA) under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT).

Agreement has been entered into between IPO and International Bureau of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) for the same for an initial term until December 2017.

An ISA is authorized by the WIPO to perform a search regarding the claimed subject matter in a patent application and give a written opinion regarding the patentability of the claimed subject matter, which designates the ISA as the search authority.

Up until only 15 nations were only recognised for the acting under this capacity and with this recognition India has become the only English speaking nation in whole of Asia to be a part of such coveted league. This definitely boost up our international recognition in intellectual property (IP) arena and will surely generate much talked about forex for India in terms of statutory fee, by getting applications from all over, for conducting the search and approving the applications.

Indian applicant’s will be able to apply for global patents by filing their applications in India only and as an ISA, major functions of IPO will be to approve or establish the title and conduct international searches.

Fee for doing search is INR 10,000/- for every applicant, except in case of an individual applicant, where the fee is INR 2,500/-.

Disclaimer: This is not a legal opinion and should not be construed as one.  Please speak with your attorney for any advice.



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