Simplifying Intellectual Property Rights Processes for Common People
| Dr. Paresh Kumar C. Dave - 05 Oct 2018

Simplifying Intellectual Property Rights Processes for Common People

By Dr. Paresh Kumar C. Dave

New Delhi, Oct 05, 2018: The Union Government has simplified the procedure to file the patent and Trade mark related applications and has also imposed strict Timelines to ensure speedy disposal under the amended Patent Rules. Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) have taken multipronged approach to increase disposal of patent applications. The number of admissible adjournments has been limited and now applications can be transferred electronically from any of the branches of Patent Office to another. Expedited examination and hearing through video conferencing are also permitted. The manpower has been augmented for examination and disposal patent applications, 495 Examiners of Patents and Designs have been recruited and 84 new posts of Examiners and 95 posts of controllers were sanctioned for patent offices recently. Computerized work-flow, automation and IT enablement have been implemented to facilitate the examination work and optimize the speed and quality of examination.

After these steps, the pendency of patent applications at examination stage has come down from 2.04 lakh as on 31st March 2017 to 1.72 lakh as on 28th of February this year. Minister of State of Commerce and Industry, C R Chaudhary, had given this information in a written reply in the Lok Sabha in April this year.

But still, there is a lack of awareness about the Intellectual Property Rights, Patent Laws, Processes and facilities available. People think this is kind of some big elephant and not their cup of tea. Intellectual Property Rights are legal rights governing the use of creations of the human mind. The recognition and protection of these rights is of recent origin. Patents, designs and trademarks are considered as industrial property.

In 2017, up to 13,045 patents were granted in India - twice as many as in 2015. The report submitted by Minister of state in the ministry of commerce and industry, Mr. C. R. Chaudhary in July 2018 in the parliament.Interestingly, according to otherreport the number of patents filed by a US firm in India in 2016-17 was more than double of all patent applications from 50 labs under DRDO, more than 40 labs in IISc, 38 labs under CSIR, 31 NITs, 23 IITs, and six major research facilities under ISRO. The main reason behind this is “No awareness among the common man” and even “very low awareness among the educated people”. This reflects in the recently conducted survey by Einfolge, an international patent analytics and market research company. The conceptual study on ‘Intellectual Property: Rights, Need & Awareness’ reveals that majority of respondents — students, scholars, teachers and managers were not fully aware about the benefits of IP and other related issues. Also, around 35% respondents were not aware about IPRs.
 

In this article, the author is trying to explain, “Patent” or “Intellectual Property Rights” in a very simple language. How simple it is to file and get a patent in India. “Patent” is one of the important intellectual property rights.

 

What is a Patent?

A patent is an exclusive right granted for an invention, which is a product or a process that provides, in general, a new way of doing something, or offers a new technical solution to a problem. To get a patent, technical information about the invention must be disclosed to the public in a patent application.

What is a purpose of the patenting system?

The main purpose of the patenting system is to encourage the development of new inventions, and also to encourage the disclosure of these new inventions. Inventors are often hesitant to reveal the details of their invention, for fear that someone else might copy it.Patent is a techno-legal document, which is an agreement between the inventors and a government. The inventors declares their invention to the government for publishing it to the general public, against which government agrees to give monopoly rights to the inventors/applicants for 20 years and they can exclude others from using, selling, offering for sell or importing the patented invention products or products prepared using the patented processes.

For further understanding the patenting system, we discuss in little detail. When the patent is published with all the details of the invention, other learned people of the society learn about the invention. More people then be inspired to think up enhancement, improvements or alternatives to the patented invention.Presumably they would then patent these alternatives. And then society benefits by having two inventions rather than one. By this way, the society get benefit and get cheaper and more improved products and products by using more improved processes.Patented inventions have, in fact, pervaded every aspect of human life, from “electric bulb” (patents held by Edison and Swan) and plastic (patents held by Baekeland), to ballpoint pens (patents held by Biro), and microprocessors (patents held by Intel, for example).

Why to file a Patent?

The 20 years monopoly also gives the inventor anopportunity to recoup the investments he or she made during the development of his or her invention. The inventor can start own product manufacturing or can form partnership with others who has money to invest. Alternatively, the inventor may also license the invention to the existing manufacturer. The inventor can also reduce the competition in the market by stopping others. The inventor can enjoy the leadership position and also get recognition by way of patenting their invention.

Is a Patent Valid in every country?

Patents are territorial rights. Which means, if one can get a granted patent in India, then he or she can only have right in India. In general, the exclusive rights are only applicable in the country or region in which a patent has been filed and granted, in accordance with the law of that country or region. If the inventor has to practice their invention in any other country they have to file a patent application in the respective country.

Who can file a Patent Application?

According to the law, the inventor, or a person to whom the inventor has assigned (for example “Patent Agent”) or is under an obligation to assign the invention (“Patent Applicant” or “Patent Assignee”), may apply for a patent, with certain exceptions. If the inventor is deceased, the application may be made by legal representatives, that is, the administrator or executor of the estate. Let me explain, Patent agent term in little detail, “Patent Agent” is a professional who is entitled (whose name is registered by the Indian Patent Office under the Indian Patent Act 1970) to draft and file patent applications on the behalf of an applicant.

Further, the inventor(s) can visit Indian Patent Office website (www.ipindia.nic.in ) or may contact to nearest Patent office. In India, we have Indian Patent Offices at four different places; these are New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Chennai. One can find contact details on the patent office website. The Indian patent office supports individual inventors to provide relevant information. The patent filing process is not difficult at all; one has to read thru the instructions properly. However, the inventor has to understand that patent application is a techno-legal document and whatever they will provide or write information under the section of “Claim” in the patent application it is protected.

More details can be found on the Indian Patent Office website, www.ipindia.nic.in.

(Author Dr. Paresh Kumar C. Dave is Founder and Director of IP Moment, New Delhi. He can be contacted at paresh.dave@ipmoment.com.


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