Some countries may at the time of registration problem a "provisional patent" and could grant a "grace time period" of a single year which avoids the invalidity of the patent to an inventor who disclosed his invention ahead of filing a patent in a non-confidential basis with the advantage of allowing fast dissemination of technical details even though reserving the industrial exploitation of the invention. Based on the nation, the first "inventor" or the initial "filer" has priority to the patent.
The patent is valid only in a offered territory. As a result, the patent remains national. It is possible to file a patent application for a specified nation (INPI for France, the USPTO for the U.S., JPO for Japan), or a group of nations (with the EPO for 38 European countries, filing a PCT application for the 142 signatories of the Treaty). Thus, a patent application may possibly cover several countries.
In return, the invention should be disclosed to the public. In practice, patents are automatically published 18 months right after the priority date, that is to say, after the 1st filing, except in specific situations.
To be patentable, aside from the reality that it must be an "invention", an invention should also meet three vital criteria.
1. It should be new, that is to say that nothing at all comparable has ever been accessible to the public information, by any signifies whatsoever (written, oral, use. ), and anyplace. It also must not match the content of a patent that was filed but not however published.
2. It must have inventive phase, that is to say, it are not patent protection able to be apparent from the prior art.
3. It must have industrial application, that is to say, it can be employed or manufactured in any variety of market, such as agriculture (excluding operates of artwork or crafts, for illustration).
When a business believes that its competitors are unlikely to find out new invention ideas one of its secrets and techniques for the duration of the time period of coverage of any patent, or that the organization would not be innovative products able to detect infringement or enforce its rights, it can choose not to file, which carries a risk and a benefit.
The danger: If a competitor finds the very same approach and obtains a patent on it, the firm may possibly be prohibited to use his very own invention ( the French law and American law differ on this stage, one particular contemplating the evidence at the date of discovery, and the other at the date of publication). French law also includes a so-called exception of "prior individual possession" for a person who can demonstrate that the alleged invention was indeed infringed previously in its possession prior to the filing date of the patent application. In such case, operation would only be ready to proceed for that individual on the French territory.
The benefit: If there is no patent, the technique is not published and therefore the business can assume to proceed operation in theory indefinitely (Nonetheless in practice, a person will probably discover the idea one day, but the duration of safety might finish up longer in total). This technique of trade secret and for that reason non- patenting is utilized in some cases by the chemical industry.