Patent Business Lawyer in Asia

Patent Attorney practicing Patents, Corporate Law, Mergers and Acquisitions, Venture Financing, Startup Technology Law

If you have any sort of background in technical or creative inventions, you have probably heard the words ‘patent’ and ‘copyright’, with a vague idea of what they denote. So, let us discuss what exactly a patent is, why it is so important, and how to go about acquiring one in a way that benefits you.

What exactly is a patent?

A patent is a technical, legal document that protects your ideas and inventions against theft, reproduction, or reuse. Simply speaking, it protects your technical hard work from being stolen, or from being profited off without your explicit permission. Similar to how a copyright protects art, writing, and published material – a patent protects the technology and research results that go into producing a new invention or product.

Given that most products are made of many different parts; patents usually protect the individual technical pieces that go into it more often than the whole. For example, you could not possibly patent an entire cell-phone. But you could patent the screen technology, specific battery type, unique application codes, etc.

Patent Filing Legal Aid

The Indian Patent Office (IPO) is the main patent granting authority in India. Technically, a patent can be filed without a lawyer as long as you understand the specifics of the process – but having legal aid on your side is never a bad thing. This is because filing the patent requires technical expertise. A lawyer, or patent agent, would know the exact details that need to go into a patent application to prevent anyone from finding loopholes and making your patent-claim redundant. A lawyer can also do the correct due diligence to ensure that an existing patent does not exist for the property you are attempting to claim.

The Step-by-Step Timeline of Patent Filing in India

The first step to patent filing is the application process. Generally, a provisional application is filled (an optional step, if you are still in the process of perfecting/finalizing your technology and simply want to explain the novelty aspect of your invention), after which a 12-month time period is given to complete the application. Bear in mind, the scope of the complete application cannot exceed the scope of the provisional one. A complete application can also be a collection of multiple provisional applications. The idea of a provisional application to demarcate a boundary within which you will work.

18 months after the initial filing, the application is published in the Patent Journal, issued by the India patent office. Once published, a request for examination has to be put in within 48 months of the date of priority. This is because the examination is not an automatic process.

The Patent Examination Process

The patent examination process can take a fair amount of time. After the initial examination of application, a First Examination Report is issued by the patent office. Once this is done, the applicant has six months’ time to issue any kind of response. Once this response is collected, the Controller has the order for the grant. Bear in mind, once the examination is published, there is also scope for others to file oppositions to your claim (and, generally, the preference for these cases is always first-come). After hearing all notices, and examining all reports (first and subsequent), there is a hearing, and the controller either grants or rejects the application.

Post-hearing Patent Process

A rejected patent can obviously be appealed in an appellate court. But more importantly, in India, there is an allowance of a 12-month period for any post-grant oppositions. On the basis of any of these oppositions, the patent can be amended, or rescinded.

In situations like this, it is necessary to have legal aid to ensure that your claim is fully in compliance. However, even after the patent is granted, it is helpful to have aid to help in any legal claims, oppositions against other grants, and to help you manage the patent for its duration (usually 20 years).

Ultimately, a patent gives you a competitive edge and monopoly over your product in the market. So, ensuring that you process it in the right way becomes crucial to make your hard work not only valuable and effectively monetized, but also to ensure that it is not unfairly and incorrectly used.

Read About Patent FIling Guide

We provide patent services including patent searches, patent analytics, patent drafting, patent filing in India, PCT patent filing, patent prosecution, responding to patent office actions, patent monetization, patent commercialization, patent valuation, patent licensing, patent assignment, patent infringement reports, patent invalidation searches and patent legal opinions. Technology landscape studies are core part of our patent practice across a wide range of technology sectors:

ICT Patents

Information and Communication Technology

Biotechnology Patents

Software Patents

Mobile Applications and Computer Related Inventions – IoT (Internet of Things)

We provide comprehensive Patent and Trademark legal services via our global network to create valuable patent portfolios and resolve complex patent disputes by providing patent litigation support services.

Our team of advanced patent attorneys assists clients with patent searches, drafting patent applications, and patent (intellectual property) agreements, including licensing and non-disclosure agreements.

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter.

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications (Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech).

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management.

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firms with significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filingspatent services in India and global patent consulting services.

Global Blockchain Lawyers (www.GlobalBlockchainLawyers.com) is a digital platform to discuss legal issues, latest technology and legal developments, and applicable laws in the dynamic field of Digital Currency, Blockchain, Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency and raising capital through the sale of tokens or coins (ICO or Initial Coin Offerings).

Blockchain ecosystem in India is evolving at a rapid pace and a proactive legal approach is required by blockchain lawyers in India to understand the complex nature of applicable laws and regulations.

Provisional Patent Filing

Provisional patent application is filed when the invention is not fully ready. A well drafted provisional patent provides patent pending rights to establish inventorship and patent ownership as patent office follows first to file approach to determine the true inventor of a patent covering new idea or product.

Formulating a sound patent strategy for your technology driven company is very important in the current era. Across the globe, the in-house patent counsels, heads of research departments, tech based startups and inventors file a preliminary patent application for their invention / idea before the patent office and is known as provisional patent application.

patent attorney for drafting patent application

How to Patent a Product?

It is extremely common for the inventors to ask this question about patenting a novel and inventive product. The first and foremost requirement for inventors while planning for patent process is to maintain proper records of their invention. In essence, laboratory notebooks, idea related documentation, technical specification and other details should be recorded with date, which can establish clear inventorship and ownership of the invention at a later date. It is common for the inventors to docket each and every step of the inventive process, inventive product and novel aspects of the invention, with a view to determine the patentability or patent eligibility of the invention. 

Subsequently, a detailed and thorough patent search is conducted to determine the relevant prior art, which can challenge the novelty and inventive step (non-obviousness) of the invention. While conducting a patent search, the patent searcher or the patent attorney conducts detailed patent search and analysis across various databases, such as, for example, Google Patents, USPTO Patent Database, EPO, UKIPO, JPO etc. Such patent search is conducted by forming multiple patent search strings and using these strings in different combinations by using boolean operators like AND, OR etc.

How much does it cost to file a patent?

The cost of filing a patent and obtaining patent rights depend upon multiple steps. The patent filing process begins by engaging a patent attorney, who charges a fee for conducting a patent search and drafting a patent application, which may be a provisional patent application (PPA) followed by a non-provisional patent application (NPA), or a NPA directly. The professional charges for patent searching and patent drafting by a competent patent attorney may be in the range of 2000$ to 8000$, or maybe upwards depending upon the jurisdiction of the patent and experience of the patent lawyer. Additional component to calculate the patent cost includes official filing fee, which again varies for each jurisdiction and is further dependent upon the category of the patent applicant, i.e. one or more natural person(s) or one or more legal entities. 

Once a patent application is filed, additional cost is required to maintain the pending patent application, and once the patent office issues a patent office action or a patent examination report, further cost is incurred for responding to such objections by way of patent office action response. Thereafter, once the patent prosecution process is complete, patent renewal fee is required to be paid at regular intervals during the term of the patent. Hence, as may be seen, the total cost of a patent depends upon multiple steps, subject to the jurisdiction and requirements specified by the local patent office.

How do you patent an idea or a product?

To protect a new idea or a new product, a well crafted patent strategy is required that ensures that the new idea or the new product is not infringed by third parties. One important point to be considered is that patent laws across various countries or jurisdictions require that a patent application must be filed before disclosing or discussing the idea publicly. This is so because once a new idea is shared publicly without filing a patent application, it becomes public knowledge and anyone is free to execute the idea.

How do I turn my idea into a product?

Successful conversion of new ideas into products requires detailed market research, development of prototypes and appropriate patent marketing. Operationally, patent licensing opportunities can be determined by conducting thorough studies about market potential, financial and technical due diligence, regulatory analysis and SWOT analysis.

What is a provisional patent application?

The provisional patent application is a legal document filed before the patent office (For example,  United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), Indian Patent Office (IPO) or any other patent office.) If a US national is filing patent before the USPTO, the patent application would be known as U.S. national patent application having validity in U.S. alone. Even though, formal set of patent claims are not mandatory in the provisional patent filing we recommend our clients to write a broad set of patent claims in the provisional patent application

However, in order to obtain a granted patent, the patent applicant must fully and particularly describe the invention  in detail and describe the best mode in a complete specification. It is important to remember the deadline for filing Non-provisional patent application. Once the Non-provisional patent application in filed in the home country, one can file international PCT patent before the WIPO.

Missing the deadline for patent filing of complete / non-provisional patent application [12 months from filing provisional patent application] will cause irreparable loss and the provisional application will simply expire.

To read more articles related to Provisional patent applications: click here

Frequently Asked Questions by Inventors

Priority date implies the earliest date from which the patent rights begin, and while determining the term of a patent or during patent infringement lawsuits, the priority date plays a crucial role.

It is common for inventors to develop prototypes and pen down ideas during early stages before finalising the exact features of the invention. To ensure appropriate protection during this period, and to establish ownership by creating patent pending rights, it is important for the inventors to file a provisional patent application.

Provisional Patent Application

A provisional application is a summary of the invention and is filed to protect the invention at its early stage.

Since 8th June, 1995, U.S Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has provided inventors the choice of filing a provisional application for patent which was intended to provide a lower-cost prior patent filing within the United States and to administer U.S. applicants equality with foreign applicants under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) Uruguay Round Agreements.

If an applicant has filed the a Provisional Patent Application for grant of patent he/she has to file the Non-Provisional/Complete Patent Application filed under U.S. Code § 111 of Title 35, within a period of 12 months from the date of filing of the provisional application or else the application will be considered to be abandoned. The pendency period of 12 months cannot be extended, but if the Non-Provisional/Complete Patent Application is filed after 14 months of filing the Provisional Patent Application, such application may be accepted by filing a grantable petition (including a statement that the delay in filing the Non-Provisional/Complete Patent Application was not deliberate and the required petition fee has been paid) to reinstate the advantages under 37 CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) 1.78.

Non-Provisional/Complete Patents v. Provisional Patents

> Non-Provisional/Complete Patents are most undeviating and therefore, the shortest path to grant of patents, whereas, Provisional Patents have a much lower cost of applying as compared to Non-Provisional/Complete Patents.

> A Non-Provisional/Complete Patents is good for inventions that have a short half life much like electronics and software which are about to be launched into the market, whereas, Provisional Patents are good for inventions that take time for R&D and thus needs to be kept under wraps by getting an additional year for filing for grant of the patent with complete specifications of the patent.

> In case the applicant wants to make additions after filling for Non-Provisional/Complete Patents, he/she has to do it by re-filing those addition inventions, whereas in Provisional Patents, the applicant has one whole year to make all the changes he/she wants in the patent and it also benefits the applicant by addition one extra year to the patent life (i.e., from 20 years to 21 years).

> One can only file his/her patents application as Non-Provisional/Complete Patent, in one time, whereas multiple Provisional Patent Applications may be filed by the applicant and be considered as one at the end of one year.

Limitation of Provisional Patent Applications

With some benefits, the Provisional Patents also attract certain limitations which are as follows:

1) The Provisional Patents Applications cost more than Complete Applications since the effort put in is double.

2) Even though the patent specifications will be kept from public record, the invention will has to be disclosed.

3) In case the applicant misses the one year deadline of filing the Non-Provisional/Complete Patent Application, the application will be considered as abandoned.

Filing of Provisional Patents Applications

A filing date will be granted to a Provisional Patent Application only when it contains a written description of the invention, fulfilling with all requirements of U.S. Code § 112(a) of Title 35.

The USPTO provides the following two documents for filing of Provisional Patent Application which have to be filled by either the applicant himself or his/her legal representative:

* Provisional Cover Sheet identifying;

* the application as a provisional application for patent;

* the name(s) of all inventors;

* inventor residence(s);

* title of the invention;

* name and registration number of attorney or agent and docket number (if applicable);

* correspondence address; and

* any U.S. Government agency that has a property interest in the application.

* Fee Transmittal Form as set forth in 37 CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) 1.16(d)

The provisional application (written description and drawings), filing fee and cover sheet can be filed electronically using EFS-Web or filed by mail.

Electronically Using EFS-Web: The provisional application can be filed electronically only if EFS-Web is used. EFS-Web permits patent applications, together with provisional applications, to be filed safely via the Internet. Applicants prepare documents in Portable Document Format (PDF), attach the documents, authenticate that the PDF documents will be well-matched with USPTO internal automated information systems, submit the documents, and pay fees with real-time payment processing. When fillable EFS-Web forms are used, the data entered into the forms is robotically loaded into USPTO information systems. Further information on EFS-Web is available here.

By Mail: The provisional application and filing fee can be mailed to:

Commissioner for Patents

P.O. Box 1450

Alexandria, VA 22313-145

USPTO Patent Filing

What information to include in a provisional patent application while filing it before US patent office USPTO ?

Many a times, our patent clients ask about what all information we should provide which can be included in the provisional patent application. However,  it is a known fact that you get protection for matter you disclose in the patent application. Having said that, it is important to include as much technical information as possible in the provisional patent disclosure.

The provisional patent application should describe the nature of invention & contain the description of essential elements of the invention. A provisional patent application with detailed explanation provides a good skeleton for the patent attorney to convert it into a utility / non-provisional patent application.

For example, a start-up research company is in phase I for making a new antibody to a particular antigen, but lack finances to actually create the antibody itself. Generally, in such a scenario the start-up research company will pitch the idea to the venture capital entities in exchange for the monetary funds needed to create the antibody. It is advisable for the start-up research company to first file a provisional patent application that includes details about the particular antigen and novel description for the same. More details of the main elements should be included in the provisional patent application.

Advantages for Filing Provisional Patent Application

As a patent centric firm managed by highly experienced patent attorneys and patent lawyers, we retrieve and provide clients with strong patentability analysis reports in addition to provisional patent application drafting, which can save time and money during the entire patent process. Such thorough patent research is aligned with the business strategy and corporate evaluations of the clients, so that potentially strong patent applications are filed to create a valuable patent portfolio, thereby adding to the intangible assets owned by the clients.

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications (Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech)

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firms with significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filingspatent services in India and global patent consulting services.

Global Blockchain Lawyers (www.GlobalBlockchainLawyers.com) is a digital platform to discuss legal issues, latest technology and legal developments, and applicable laws in the dynamic field of Digital Currency, Blockchain, Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency and raising capital through the sale of tokens or coins (ICO or Initial Coin Offerings).

Blockchain ecosystem in India is evolving at a rapid pace and a proactive legal approach is required by blockchain lawyers in India to understand the complex nature of applicable laws and regulations.

Blockchain Patents

Blockchain is one of most hyped technology in recent times, and patent protection for blockchain based innovations will have a high degree of impact on projects covering smart contracts, cryptocurrency (Bitcoin), distributed ledger, financial technology (FinTech) products and supply chain management.

Like all other patents, blockchain patents are exclusive rights which are issued by an official authority like an intergovernmental organization or a sovereign state. These exclusive rights are of the inventor or the assignee which he/she gets in exchange for providing the details of the invention in a public domain.

patent lawyer in india

Blockchain Patent embodies the new business value of “trust”. Information technology infrastructure readiness will wither make or break the future of Blockchain because collaboration is the basis for Blockchain innovation. Thus, you should go slowly before you get fast by following the 3 A’s – Awareness, Adoption & Acceptance. A flexible approach will help beat security, privacy, scalability and interoperability challenges.

Blockchain has achieved global importance in recent years due to Bitcoin. It depends on encryption for safety and distributed computer technology. Instead of counting on a third party, it preserves, corroborates, broadcasts, and exchanges data over a distributed network, thereby delivering trusted and value at a very low cost. To get a head start in blockchain standardization and patents, the Chinese government has encouraged the industry, academia, and research institutes to develop related technologies and apply for patents. Some of the leading vendors of Blockchain Patents are Alibaba, Tencent, Xiaomi, Huawei, SinoChain, Bubi Technologies, IBM Intel etc.

Blockchain Patent Landscape

Globally, patent applications pertaining to blockchain technology have been rising rapidly. A thorough review and analysis of blockchain patent landscape reveals that blockchain patents are being filed worldwide in the financial sector, non-financial sector (real estate), and other generic sectors. It is expected that with growth of blockchain, and with introduction of novel innovations using blockchain, patents are bound to increase in this area, thereby increasing the possibility of blockchain patent lawsuits and blockchain patent licensing.

First Blockchain Patent

As reported by CoinDesk, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), has explored ways to authenticate digital certificates and store data in a sharable blockchain. As per a patent application filed with China’s State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO), the bank aims to use a blockchain system to improve the efficiency of certificate issuance and save users from repetitively filing the same document to multiple entities. In use, the technology, based on the patent, touts a system where a certificate issuer will first match a user’s credential with a particular certificate digitally. After it’s approved, the data will be encrypted and moved onto a blockchain which will update the distributed ledger held by different entities that could potential require this certificate. By further decrypting the data with users’ specific credentials, the system will allow entities to view an authenticated document digitally to streamline its operation flow.

As reported therein, the referenced patent, currently the first blockchain-related one filed by the bank with the SIPO, was first submitted in November 2017 and released on Friday. It explained that the technological exploration stems from the current pain point where consumers are constantly being required to submit the same certificate – such as for birth, marriage or eduction – by different entities they are dealing with.

Number of Blockchain Patents

As per numerous reports, there exist more than 500 blockchain patents worldwide. As it may seem obvious, majority of these patents are filed by banking and financial companies, thereby leading to a possible patent war in future. Apart from potential patent battle, multiple patent licensing opportunities can also be expected in near future.

List of Blockchain Patents

The first mentions of blockchain and cryptocurrency-related patents appeared around 2012, as per USPTO records. During the 2012-2015 period, in the U.S. alone, establishments had had congregate a minimum of eighty three patent applications that contained words like “cryptocurrency” and “blockchain” in their forms. Consequently, that number has escalated even further since, 2017 was a very active year for blockchain and cryptocurrency patent filings. The number of major patent applications appears to be on the rise throughout the primary months of 2018.

IBM Blockchain Patents

As a result of comprehensive research and development efforts, IBM inventors have received a record 9,043 patents in 2017, marking the company’s 25th consecutive year of U.S. patent leadership and crossing the 100,000-patent milestone. As reported by IBM, almost half of the patents granted to IBM in 2017 are pioneering advancements in AI, cloud computing, cybersecurity, blockchain and quantum computing.

Blockchain Patent Apps

Blockchain acts as an enabler for other high technologies such as IoT (Internet of Things), Machine Learning, AI (Artificial Intelligence). There are about 100 million users of Blockchain applications worldwide, which also include various blockchain patent apps.

Blockchain Patents by Company

Major financial and technological enterprises from China and also the U.S. are leading the world drive to develop blockchain applications, according to a new report that ranks entities by patents filed. The Internet giant in China, Alibaba tops the list with a total of 90 patent applications targeted on blockchain-related technologies. In second place is IBM, which plunged by just one short of that total with 89 filings, while Mastercard occupies third place with 80 filings. Bank of America secured the fourth place, with 53 blockchain patent applications.

Who owns blockchain patents?

It’s straightforward to see why big, well-established FinTech companies (i.e. JPMorgan, Mastercard, Bank of America, etc.) would desire to file patents for blockchain and cryptocurrency technologies. However, the kinds of companies filing such patents appear to be increasing in variety each year.

Companies from “traditional industries” are also opening to file more blockchain and cryptocurrency patents. For instance, Zhong An, a large Chinese insurance company, is functioning on a number of innovative blockchain technologies. The rise in patent applications from companies which were once considered to be in non-tech sectors are helping re-shape the way people look at the long run of business and tech in the global economy.

Is the Blockchain even Patentable?

It is likely that patent applications will multiply, but the immediate question is whether they can overcome the hurdles presented in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International, (2014) US Supreme Court decision. The Supreme Court unanimously held that claims to a computer-implemented technique of extenuating “settlement risk” in financial transactions were barred from patenting. The Court elucidates that a claim directed to an abstract idea is not qualified for patent protection when it “merely requires generic computer implementation” or “attempt[s] to limit the use of [the idea] to a selected technological surroundings.”

Blockchain and Cryptocurrency

Over 10,000 years ago, humans began wisdom to use shells to trade for supplies. Shells eventually turned into money. Now, with the development of the Internet, digital currency has begun to pass and is gradually replacing traditional currency. Unparalleled changes in payment strategies are coming about as a consequence. The sudden surfacing of cryptocurrencies such as BitCoin, Ethereum, and LiteCoin has forced the financial world to meet these changes head-on and to consider complete changes. Cryptocurrencies are ready to develop unhampered by the traditional financial system because they are backed by a key technology – the blockchain. In its fundamental form it is an open ledger of information that can be used to store and track transactions, and which is exchanged and verified on a peer-to-peer network.

Distributed Ledger

A blockchain is a type of distributed ledger, consisting of unalterable, digitally recorded data in packages called blocks. A novel solution achieves this without any trusted central authority: preservation of the blockchain is performed by a network of communicating nodes running bitcoin software. Transactions of the form payer A sends B bitcoins to payee C are broadcast to this network using voluntarily available software applications. Network nodes can authenticate transactions, add them to their copy of the ledger, and then transmit these ledger additions to other nodes. The blockchain is a distributed database – to achieve independent verification of the chain of ownership of any and every bitcoin (amount), each network node stores its own copy of the blockchain. Approximately six times per hour, a new group of accepted transactions, a block, is created, added to the blockchain, and quickly published to all nodes. This allows bitcoin software to determine when a particular bitcoin amount has been spent, which is necessary in order to prevent double-spending in an environment without central oversight. Whereas a conventional ledger records the transfers of actual bills or promissory notes that exist apart from it, the blockchain is the only place that bitcoins can be said to exist in the form of unspent outputs of transactions. Blockchain, the technology behind bitcoin could profoundly alter the way banks do business worldwide, lowering their operating costs and making financial services securer and more accessible, a World Economic Forum report finds Technology could lead to lower fees for consumers, better regulatory oversight and better preparedness against financial bubbles, but impact is likely to be mostly limited to the back-end of banking operations, with major disruption through innovations such as bitcoin less likely to transform the industry.

Blockchain and other distributed ledger technologies create a trustworthy and transparent record by allowing multiple parties to a transaction to verify what will be entered onto a ledger in advance without any single party having the ability to change any ledger entries later on. Each transaction or “block” is transmitted to all the participants in the network and must be verified by each participant “node” solving a complex mathematical puzzle. Once the block is verified, it is added to the ledger or chain.

Blockchain technology enables cryptocurrencies, which are peer-to-peer, decentralized, digital currencies capable of serving in highly secure transactions. Pseudonymous developer(s) Satoshi Nakamoto introduced BitCoin in January 2009, offering a currency that used no paper or metal

but only 31,000 lines of code and an announcement on the Internet.8 Today, the market capitalization of bitcoin is around $10.5 billion.

Blockchain Applications for Banks

The blockchain can guarantee the provenance of every transaction—a service currently provided for banks by a cumbersome and bureaucratic set of back-office systems. With blockchain architecture, there is no need for a central clearinghouse or financial institution to act as a third party to financial transactions, because trust in the system is created by a type of cryptography. Moreover, according to Blythe Masters of Digital Asset Holdings, “one master prime record can eliminate the need for reconciliation, which is a very costly process for financial institutions, while improving compliance, security and privacy.”11 The economic impact is that a cryptocurrency carries a very low transaction cost and, theoretically, offers a cheaper electronic payment method.

The blockchain technology has created a whole new playing field, and the game could yet be very hard-fought. It remains to be seen whether this becomes a winner-takes-all race and how the issue of standards for the technology will be managed. But in the face of a disruptive technology, banks will be keen to protect their innovations.

Limitations & Challenges of Blockchain in Public Sector

Blockchain is not a cure-all, it has certain limitations and challenges to face in the public sector, such as:

1) IMMUTABILITY- A blockchain is an add-only list. Once data is added, it can’t be removed. Perhaps not a good fit when updating/deleting data is a regular occurrence.

2) DATA STORAGE – Databases are often used to store large amounts of data (images, docs, apps, etc.). However, Blockchain is designed for small pockets of data. If data storage is needed, Blockchain may not be a good fit, or a hybrid solution may be needed.

3) TALKING ABOUT BLOCKCHAIN – The act of explaining blockchain to public officials and civil servants is difficult. De-linking blockchain from Bitcoin and discussing how it can improve efficiency and strengthen mission effectiveness can help.

4) COSTS – Higher short-term costs associated with a still- emerging technology prevent its widespread use. Blockchain-as-a-service products are starting to be offered that can allow for experimentation.

5) BLOCKERS – People often flag issues such as energy consumption and scalability as Blockchain blockers. However, many of these are irrelevant to government Blockchain implementations (i.e., only apply to Proof of Work consensus on permissionless/pubic blockchains).

6) CODING & GOVERNANCE MODELS – Blockchains are known for eliminating the need for central authority, but this is not entirely true. They must be coded and governed by those entrusted with key roles. Governments must build a technical knowledge base to ensure these decisions are made well (even if the actual coding is outsourced).

Blockchain Innovations

The more blockchain innovators join together to protect and nurture our innovation, the better for our ecosystem. We all agree that patents in the wrong hands will hurt our industry and the speed at which others embrace blockchain. We all must take responsibility and be good corporate citizens when it comes to IP. By removing the uncertainty that comes from PAEs, we can avoid the turmoil and costly litigation we saw play out in the Smartphone and semiconductor industries. If we remove friction, we can accelerate the adoption of blockchain technology. This tide will raise all boats.

Whether you are an investor or an entrepreneur in blockchain projects, you should strongly consider the manner by which your projects handle their intellectual property and do careful diligence to ensure that your interests are not threatened by a potential patent battle.

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications(Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech)

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firms with significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filingspatent services in India and global patent consulting services.

Global Blockchain Lawyers (www.GlobalBlockchainLawyers.com) is a digital platform to discuss legal issues, latest technology and legal developments, and applicable laws in the dynamic field of Digital Currency, Blockchain, Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency and raising capital through the sale of tokens or coins (ICO or Initial Coin Offerings).

Blockchain ecosystem in India is evolving at a rapid pace and a proactive legal approach is required by blockchain lawyers in India to understand the complex nature of applicable laws and regulations.

Software Patent FAQs:

How to Patent an Idea

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General Patent FAQs:

Journey of my blog from LinkedIn to 30+ news portals

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Q9. What is the trademark office procedure for trademark registration in India?
Q10. What is the Office Procedure for Registration of a Trademark?
Q11. Can a suit for infringement for a registered trade mark be instituted?
Q12. What is the procedure of Trademarks through the international registration under “MARDRID PROTOCOL”?

global trademark law firm in India

Q1. What is a Trade Mark?

Before discussing the concept of Trademark, let us first understand what a Trademark is. In general terms, a trademark can be a word, logo, symbol, label, shape, smell and combination of colours etc. and acts as a source indicator and refers to the origin of goods or services. According to Section 2(1)(zb), “trade mark” means a mark which is:
i. Capable of being represented graphically; and
ii. Capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one person from those of others and may include shape of goods, their packaging, and combination of colours, and;
• in relation to Chapter XII (other than section 107), a registered trade mark or a mark used in relation to goods or services for the purpose of indicating or so as to indicate a connection in the course of trade between the goods or services, as the case may be, and some person having the right as proprietor to use the mark; and
• in relation to other provisions of this Act, a mark used or proposed to be used in relation to goods or services for the purpose of indicating or so to indicate a connection in the course of trade between the goods or services, as the case may be, and some person having the right, either as proprietor or by way of permitted user, to use the mark whether with or without any indication of the identity of that person, and includes a certification trade mark or collective mark. Back to top

Q2. What are the essentials which every trademark must possess to be a trademark?

In order to bring it within the scope of statutory definition of trade mark, it should satisfy the following essentials:
i. It must be a mark;
ii. It must be used or proposed to be used in relation to goods which are the subject of trade or manufacture or in relation to services;
iii. The use must be of a printed or other visual representation of the mark.
iv. Such use (in relation to goods) must be upon, or in any physical or in other relation whatsoever to the goods, or (in relation to services) as a part of any statement about the availability, provision or performance of such services;
v. The use must be for the purpose of indicating or so as to indicate a connection in the course of trade between the goods/services and some person having the right to use the mark either as proprietor or as registered user. Back to top

Q3. Who can file for registration of Trade Marks in India?

The trademark law in India defines various categories of trademark applicants. Depending upon the category and type of the trademark applicant, the documentary requirements and the official filing fee varies. In essence, a trademark in India can be filed by:
1. Individual Startup/Small Enterprise; (Joint Owners, Proprietorship)
2. In all other cases (Private Limited Company, Partnership Firm, LLP etc.) Back to top

Q4. How much does it cost to get a trademark in India?

An approximate basic fee for filling of trademark in India under Form TM-A for:
(a) Individual Startup/Small Enterprise:
• E-filing – 4,500/-
• Physical filing – 5,000/-
(b) In all other cases:
• E-filing – 9,000/-
• Physical filling – 10,000/-
Note: Fee is for each class and for each mark. For details, please refer the trademark office website. Back to top

Q5. What are the different types of trademark applications?

Trademark applications are divided into one or more types by the trademark office, and as per Indian Trade Marks Office, a trademark applicant can type multiple kinds of trademark applications. The documentary requirements and other formalities for each trademark application type are different, and hence it is crucial to identify the exact type of trademark application before initiating the trademark filing process. While filing for a trademark, few things are to be considered. The first is which type of application you are filling. In trademark, there are five types of trademark applications:
(a) Standard Trademark (also known as work mark) is used to register words, letters, device, numbers or any combination thereof. A single word mark will protect the phrase irrespective of how it is being displayed.
(b) Collective Mark (Section 63(1)) as the name suggests means, a collective mark is a mark that belongs to a collective group of people or an association of persons. Example – CA (device used by Indian Chartered Accountants).
(c) Certification Mark (Section 71(1)) is defined under Section 2(e) of the Trade Marks Act, 1999 as ““certification trade mark” means a mark capable of distinguishing the goods or service in connection with which it is used in the course of trade which are certified by the proprietor of the mark in respect of origin, material, mode of manufacture of goods or performance of service not so certified and registrable as such under Chapter IX in respect of those goods or service in the name, as proprietor of the certification trade mark, of that person.” In short, it is a mark which certifies the characteristics like quality, origin etc. of other goods/services. Example – ISI (Indian Standard Institute) mark.
(d) Service Mark came into recognition after the commencement of the 1999 Trade Marks Act. A trademark pertaining to services is known as service mark. When someone registers for the service mark successfully the standard symbol of registration is used by them. This mark can also be used when the practice of trademark is done it can be used there also.
(e) Series Mark (Section 15(3)) is where the trademark applied for, is in the form of a series. In other words, the primary element of a mark might be used/intended to be used in several forms or ways by the proprietor and instead of filing separate applications for each, it is possible to file them as a series. Example – McDonald has series marks incorporating the term “Mc” like Mc chicken, Mc Café, Ms Donuts etc. Back to top

Q6. How is Trademark designated in India?

When a trademark has been registered, the symbol ® is designated to it. Using the symbol ® for an unregistered mark is illegal. A mark which is not registered may use the symbol ™ which simply means one claims to be the proprietor of that mark. Back to top

Q7. What is Honest Concurrent Use?

Section 12 of the Indian Trade Marks Act, 1999 takes about “Registration in the case of honest concurrent use, etc”. Section 12 provides for registration of same or similar trademarks by more than one proprietor in the case of honest concurrent use or other special circumstances. The provision establishes the superiority of trade mark rights acquired by use.
Concurrent use by two or more persons of the same trade mark for the same goods is contrary to the whole essence of trademark jurisprudence, for a trade mark is intended to denote that the goods come from one source and one source only. However, exceptional circumstances arise when more than one person honestly and independently adopts the same or similar mark and continue to use without objection and without knowledge of each other’s marks, often in different territories, and without causing any confusion or deception to the public. It is considered just and natural to confer the benefit of registration to such concurrent users, even if it causes some occasional confusion.
Section 12 permits the registration by more than one proprietor of identical or similar trade marks in respect of same or similar goods or services. It is an exception to the prohibition of registration of similar marks and it overrides the generality of prohibitions contained in Sections 9 and 11 of the said Act.
The power of granting concurrent registration under Section 12 is discretionary. This is clear from the use of the words “the Registrar may permit registration”. Back to top

Q8. What is the procedure to file for registration of a Trade Mark in India?

A trademark is filed in India through Form TM – A with the respective Trade Mark Office (New Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and Ahmadabad). A trademark can be filled either through e-filing or through physical filing. A requisite fee is payable for filling of the trademark which is mentioned under The First Schedule of Trade Marks Act, 1999. (See Rule 11).

The first and foremost thing to determine while filing for a trademark is to assign a particular class/classes to the trademark. For filing an application with the Indian Trade Marks Office, the goods and/or services need to be categorized according to the class they fall under. The Nice Classification is a system of international classification of goods/services born out of the “Nice Agreement”, to be used for application of trademarks. There are 1-45 classes in the Nice Classification out of which, classes from 1-34 categorize Goods and classes 35 – 45 classify services.

Each class specifies a broad heading called ‘Class Header’ which gives a clear idea as to the type of goods/services which fall under them and the detailed list of names of goods/services. The Classification also gives an ‘explanatory note’ which very clearly elucidates about the type of goods/services which would fall under the particular class. The explanatory note allays doubts as to the applicable class for a particular goods/service and that way very helpful to determine the class.
A trademark can be filed for a mark/logo which is proposed to be used or already in use. If the mark/and logo is proposed to be used, the date shall be mentioned in the application form in DD/MM/YYYY format. In case the use of the mark is clamed to be prior to the date of application, the applicant shall file an affidavit testifying to such use along with the supporting documents and the affidavit shall be attested by a notary public.

A Power of Attorney is mandatory to be filed along with the application duly executed by the Applicant in favour of the trademark attorney. Back to top

Q9. What is the patent office procedure for patent registration in India?

Once an application for registration of trademark is filled with the Trade Mark Office, the Registrar may, refuse the application, accept it absolutely or accept it subject to such amendments, modifications, conditions or limitations, if any, as the registrar may think fit.
The Registrar may also withdraw his/her acceptance if he is of the opinion that the application was accepted in error, or that the trademark ought not to have been accepted in the circumstances of the case, or proposes that the trademark should be registered only subject to conditions, limitation, divisions or to conditions additional or different from the conditions, or limitations, subject to which the application has been accepted. The Registrar shall send a written communication of such action to the applicant. (See section 19 r/w Rule 38 of Trade Mark Act, 1999 & Trade Marks Rules, 2017)
If the registrar accepts the application, the application enters into the stages of registration. The initial stage is the “FORMALITY CHECK”. If the application passes the general formalities that must be fulfilled by the applicant in check, the status of the application on the Trade Mark Registry Website will show “FORMALITY CHK PASS”, and if the formalities are not in accordance with the law, it will show “FORMALITY CHK FAIL.”
The second stage, “MARKED FOR EXAM” is when the application, only after passing the formality check, is assigned to an Examiner. The trademark would be examined as to its ability to be registered under the various Sections of the Trade Marks Act, 1999. An examination report is then issued either accepting the trademark for publication or raising objections as to its registrability. At this stage, the applicant needs to wait for the examination report to be issued. An examination report is usually issued within a period of one month to one year depending on the backlog of the registry.
The stage of “OBJECTED”. If an examination report has been issued raising objections, a reply has to be filed by the applicant with a period of one month from the date on which the examination report was received by the applicant, failing which the trademark application may be treated as abandoned by the Registry. If the Examiner is not convinced with the written response, a hearing is posted for allowing arguments to be put forth in person.
The status “EXAM REPORT ISSUED” or “ACCEPTED” is used by the Trade Mark Registry to indicate that the trademark application has been ordered for publication in the Trade Marks Journal prior to registration. This status is used by the Registry when no objections are raised by the Examiner as to the registrability of the trademark or when the objections are overcome by way of written submissions or hearing. No action is required by the applicant at this point unless the application does not move forward for journal publication.
The status is shown to be as “AVERTISED BEFORE ACC” or “ADVERTISED” or “ACCEPTED & ADVERTISED” when the trademark application is advertised/published in the Trade Marks Journal. This is one of the final stages in the trademark registration process. Once the trademark is published in the Trade Marks Journal, 4 months’ time is given for any third party to oppose the registration of the trademark. If no oppositions are filed during the 4 month opposition period, then the trademark registration certificate is usually issued within 3 months thereafter.
But if the application is opposed, the status will reflect as “OPPOSED”. This happens when a third party files an opposition to the registration of your trademark. The notice of opposition is sent by the Registry to the applicant or its agent. In order to contest the opposition, a counter statement should be filed within 2 months from the date of receipt of notice of opposition, failing which the trademark application will be abandoned and cannot be revived. No extension of time is granted for filing the counter statement. (See Section 21 of Trade Marks Act, 1999)
If there is any error regarding the data entry of application or if the documents were not digitized properly and which needs to be corrected, the application is “SENT BACK TO EDP” (Electronic Data Processing) section.
In case any amendments which were filed prior to registration such as proprietor details, address, specification of good, etc, the application is “SEND TO PRAS” (Pre-Registration Amendment Section). Back to top

Q10. What is the Office Procedure for Registration of a Trademark?

When no notice for opposition is advertised or re-advertised to an application in the Journal within a period of 4 months, or where the opposition was made and was dismissed, the Registrar shall, subject to the provisions of sub-section (1) of Section 23 and Section 19, enter the trademark on the register. (Rule 53 of Trade Marks Rules, 2017)
The Certificate of Registration will be issued by the Registrar under sub-section (2) of Section 23 on FORM RG-2 and shall include the trademark. The form shall bear the seal of the Trade Marks Registry. (Rule 56 of Trade Marks Rules, 2017)
The term of registration for a trademark in India is 10 Years. A trademark is to be renewed after every 10 years by filing FORM TM-R along with a prescribed fee of Rs. 10,000 for physical filing and Rs. 9,000 for e-filing for each class. ((Rule 57 of Trade Marks Rules, 2017). Back to top

Q11. Can a suit for infringement for a registered trade mark be instituted?

The holder of a “registered” trademark has exclusive right over his/her mark. If a registered trademark is infringed by another trader, he is liable for an action against him for infringement of that registered trademark. (See Section 29 of Trade Marks Act, 1999)
NO ACTION for infringement of an UNREGISTERED trademark can be instituted. (See Section 24 of Trade Marks Act, 1999)
The period of limitation for filing a suit for infringement is Three Years from the date of infringement. Back to top

Q12. What is the procedure of Trademarks through the international registration under “MADRID PROTOCOL”?

The Madrid Protocol is a treaty, signed by India in 2013, that provides for international registration of trademarks by filling a single application with one set of fee. The regulatory body of Madrid Protocol is the International Bureau of World Intellectual Property Organization (IB of WIPO). An application for registration of a trademark under the Madrid Protocol can be filled though the Indian Trademark Office of the respective jurisdiction. The application under Madrid Protocol can be filed under 3 languages, i.e., English, French and Spanish.
An application for registration of a trademark under Madrid Protocol can be filled through FORM MM2 for a prescribed fee with the respective Trade Marks Office of the applicant’s jurisdiction.
Refer: (1) Forms
(2) Fee
The Trade Marks Office then certifies such application and forwards it to WIPO. WIPO then formally examines such application and forwards it to the other designated contracting parties for thorough examination in accordance with their respective domestic law within 12/18 months.
If no objection is found by any of the designated contracting parties, WIPO registers the mark in the International Registry and then publishes the International registration in a Gazette. Back to top

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Managing full practice law firm in Delhi and Gurgaon with team of legal experts – Civil and Criminal, Cyber Law Issues, Digital Business Disputes, Social Media Defamation, Personal, Property and Matrimonial Problems, Contracts and Agreements
 
Technology Savvy Advocates, Patent Attorneys & Corporate Lawyers with 11+ years of experience in Asia Pacific, US & Europe 
 
Experts in Litigation, Patent Protection, Licensing & Enforcement, Cross-border Mergers & Acquisitions, Joint Ventures, Foreign Direct Investment & Tech Transactions in South East Asia covering consulting for global patent Attorneys in executing:
 
Patent drafting & filing for B2C & B2B digital products
 
Protection of Mobile App’s Intellectual Property via Patents, Copyrights, Website Terms & Vendor Contracts
 
Wearable device’s patent portfolio protecting hardware, dashboard, app & data analytics software
 
Medical device patentability analysis, prior art search, provisional & complete patent drafting, patent claims & patent drawings, patent filing in India, PCT, USPTO & EPO, responding to USPTO, UKIPO, MyIPO (Malaysia) & SIPO (Singapore) office actions
 
Patent Landscape & Patentability Studies for innovations in Artificial Intelligence (AI & Chat bots), Internet of Things (IoT), Wearables, Driverless Cars, Virtual & Augmented Reality, 3D Printing, Drones, Mobile Payments (Digital Wallet) & FinTech 
 
Assisting Clients with Complex Patent Issues: Patent Searches, Patent Drafting, Patent Filing, Patent Office Examinations, Patent Prosecution, Patent Due Diligence & Patent Litigation Strategy
 
Patent Strategy for International Patents, USPTO Filings, Drafting Office Action Response, Patent Reexaminations & Reissue Proceedings, Appeals to PTAB, Patent Office Trials, Inter Partes Review, Post-grant Review, Covered Business Method Patents, Interferences, Derivations & Appeals of PTAB Trial Decisions
 
European Patent Practice, Patent Oppositions, Appeals, EPO Third Party Observations, Central Limitation and Revocation, Supplementary Protection Certificates (SPC) & United Kingdom (UK) Patent Practice Advisory
 
Specialties: Litigation, Patent Litigation, Patent Infringement, Corporate & IP Strategy, Startups: Incorporation, Funding, Brand Management, Contracts & Agreements, Legal Research, SWOT, Corporate Governance, Due-diligence, Mergers & Acquisitions, Antitrust & Competition Laws, Regulatory Affairs, Freedom-to-Operate, Patent Drafting, Claim Drafting, Patent Searches, Office Actions Response, USPTO Patent appeal briefs, Patent Invalidation Analysis, Patent Opposition, Product-Claim Mapping, Patent Enforcement

 

Software Patent FAQs:

How to Patent an Idea

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General Patent FAQs:

Patent Office Action

Once a patent application is filed with the patent office, patent applicants are required to submit request for early publication of patent application in addition to request for patent examination. Once a patent examination request is filed, the patent office examines the patent application in accordance with patent procedure and provides a patent examination report (patent office action) to the patent applicants.

patent filing in india pct national phase WIPO application

Indian Patent Office Procedure

As per the procedure followed by the Indian Patent Office, the patent specification filed by the patent applicant includes invention details and patent claims. As it is well known, the most important aspect of the patent application are the patent claims because the patent claims define the scope of the invention.

Patent Examination in India

Generally, the patent examiner issues an office action setting forth the basis for rejecting one or more patent claims with respect to prior art / novelty patent search conducted by the patent examiner. The patent applicant responds with amendments in patent claims/ patent drawings and/or arguments, and the examiner issues a next office action, etc. This process continues until the patent application is allowed, abandoned, or appealed.

First Examination Report – FER

In accordance with applicable laws and rules, patent applicants are required to submit a detailed response the patent examination report (FER or first examination report) within 6 months of issuance of the first examination report or the office action. A general strategy that can be followed to draft office action response includes preparing submissions for each of the objections raised by the patent examiner. For example, for objections relating to novelty and inventive step (non-obviousness), one of the strategies can be to amend the patent claims by limiting the scope of originally filed claims. This can be done in consultation with a patent attorney, whereby, certain features from the dependent claims (or detailed description) can be added to the independent claims to ensure that the amended claims are novel and inventive as compared to the prior arts (patent and non-patent literature) cited by the patent examiner. Therefore, chances of overcoming such objections get better when novel aspects of the invention are combined with the independent claims.

Patentability of Invention

When a patent application is examined by the patent office, the primary goal of the patent examiner is to determine the patentability of the invention as defined by the patent claims, as described in detail by the patent description, and as illustrated by way of patent drawings. The intention is to ensure that the technology covered by the patent application is new and the subject matter of the patent description and patents claims was not disclosed in public domain before the date of filing of patent application, or before the first priority date of the patent application.

Definition of Invention

In accordance with the Indian Patents Act, 1970, definition of invention and inventive step include:

Section 2(1) (j) “invention” means a new product or process involving an inventive step and capable of industrial application;

Section 2(1) (ja) “inventive step” means a feature of an invention that involves technical advance as compared to the existing knowledge or having economic significance or both and that makes the invention not obvious to a person skilled in the art;

In essence, the inventive step of the technology to be patented should illustrate technical advancement or economic significance in the subject matter of the patent application as compared to the existing knowledge which is already known to a person skilled in the similar domain.

View of Indian Courts on Determining Inventive Step

In Biswanath Prasad Radhey Shyam vs Hindustan Metal Industries Ltd, it was held by the Indian Supreme court that “The expression” does not involve any “inventive step” and its equivalent word “obvious”, have acquired special significance in the terminology of Patent Law. The ‘obviousness’ has to be strictly and objectively judged. For this determination, several forms of the question have been suggested. Was it for Practical Purposes obvious to a skilled worker, in the field concerned, in the state of knowledge existing at the date of the patent to be found in the literature then available to him, that he would or should make the invention the subject of the claim concerned?

To determine Invention Step, the following points should be taken into consideration:

(a) Identify the “person skilled in the art”, i.e. a competent craftsman in same domain or engineer as distinguished from a mere artisan

(b) Identify the relevant common general knowledge of that person at the priority date of filing the patent application;

(c) Identify the inventive concept of the patent claim in question;

(d) Identify what, if any, differences exist between the matter cited as forming part of the “state of the art” of the technology and the inventive concept of the patent claims;

Industrial Applicability of the Invention

The invention as claimed in patent specification should meet the criteria that the invention can be made or used in some kind of industry. The word “Industry” broadly refers to having any useful and practical activity while excluding intellectual or aesthetic activity.

Under section 2(1)(ac) of Indian Patents Act, “capable of industrial application”, in relation to an invention, means that the invention is capable of being made or used in an industry.

However, patent claims relating to “Method of playing games” and “computer programming languages” are not considered to be industrially applicable. The detailed description of the patent specification must disclose a practical application and industrial use for the claimed invention wherein a concrete benefit must be derivable directly from the description coupled with common general knowledge.

Therefore, while drafting patent application, writing the advantages of the invention in the last few paragraphs will be helpful to illustrate the industrial applicability of the invention.

Sufficiency of Disclosure

While drafting a patent application, writing the detailed description of the patent application includes explaining each and every element of the patent claims. One should note that the patent examiner takes into consideration the whole patent document which is read with patent claims and drawings (if any) to determine patentability of the invention.

‘What’ is the invention and ‘How to perform it’ requirement should be taken care off before submitting the Patent Application before the Indian Patent Office. The complete specification should therefore disclose the invention completely to meet the requirement of the Patents Act and should also enable a person skilled in the art to work the invention without any assistance of the patentee or any further experimentation.

What is the Invention: If the patent application relates to apparatus/system/device in a computer related invention (hardware based inventions), each and every feature of the invention should be described with drawings. However, if the said system/device/apparatus patent claims are worded in such a way that they merely and only comprise of a memory which stores instructions to execute the previously claimed method and a processor to execute these instructions, then this set of claims claiming a system/device /apparatus may be deemed as conventional and may not fulfil the eligibility criteria of patentability.

Law Office of Rahul Dev, Patent Attorneys and Technology Corporate Lawyers, represents a law firm headquartered in Gurgaon, Haryana, with associate offices in New Delhi, in the proximity of the Indian Patent and Trademark Office. We are primarily focused on intellectual property law and provide patent services and patent consultation for large, multi-national corporations, universities, middle-market and emerging market companies, and startups and entrepreneurs.

Patent Prosecution in India

We handle patent prosecution in India by facilitating the interaction between inventors, patent applicants and Indian patent office, which usually includes highly complex technical and legal issues. Our team has significant experience in handling the entire patent process in India and we possess strong understanding of the relevant procedures and the potential pitfalls.

We have successfully advised our clients to obtain patent protection in India and across international jurisdictions (US, Europe, UK, Singapore, Malaysia) for a wide scale of technologies, and our patent attorneys possess years of experience in patent research, patent prior art searches, patentability analysis, patent analytics, patent application drafting, patent claim drafting, patent prosecution, , licensing, and other intellectual property-related issues.

Software Patent FAQs:

How to Patent an Idea

General Patent FAQs:

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyerpracticing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyeron Twitter

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications(Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech)

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firmswith significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filingspatent services in India and global patent consulting services.

Law office of Rahul Dev is a niche technology and research based law firm focusing on next generation business and legal issues faced in India and outside India during international business and cross-border technology transactions. We assist our clients in close collaboration with our associates and counsels within India and outside by providing custom engagement models to address our client’s needs.

Practice areas include drafting and filing patent applications, patent prior art searches, patent prosecution, patent filing in India, PCT national phase entry in India, PCT international applications with WIPO, freedom to operate searches, patentability analysis and patent strategy to create a valuable patent portfolio.

Patent attorney Rahul Dev works with clients providing expert legal services in the field of innovative pharmaceutical products, branded drugs, generic drugs, molecular biology, immunology, cell biology, regenerative medicine including ESCs, iPSCs, pSCs, diagnostics, therapeutics, theranostics, drug delivery systems, host-vector systems, high throughput screening, bioinformatics, diagnostic imaging, ancillary services (PET, CT, MRI, ultrasound, greenlight, lithotripsy, radiation therapy, cyber-knife, nuclear camera, clinical lab, pathology, physical therapy and dispensing prescriptions).

Patent attorney and technology lawyer Rahul Dev works closely with USPTO licensed patent attorneys to assist clients with patent reexaminations, patent prosecution, drafting USPTO office action responses, patent infringement litigation, patent claim mapping and patent licensing. For international patent filings, we have an established network of global patent attorneys to provide reliable and cost effective services to our clients.

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Patent Forum (Munich, Germany) | News Channels | Ministry of Corporate Affairs | ASSOCHAM | FICCI | Brand Licensing India | BioEnergy International

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Economic Times | The Hindu | BioSpectrum | International Bar Association | LawAsia | SwissInfo | Global Legal Post | HT Live Mint | Outlook Money

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Patent Attorney and Corporate Lawyer in Asia

Contact at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com

Strong expertise in resolving business and personal disputes via mediation, negotiation and out of court settlements

Managing full practice law firm in Delhi and Gurgaon with team of legal experts — Civil and Criminal, Cyber Law Issues, Digital Business Disputes, Social Media Defamation, Personal, Property and Matrimonial Problems, Contracts and Agreements

Technology Savvy Advocates, Patent Attorneys & Corporate Lawyers with 11+ years of experience in Asia Pacific, US & Europe

Experts in Litigation, Patent Protection, Licensing & Enforcement, Cross-border Mergers & Acquisitions, Joint Ventures, Foreign Direct Investment & Tech Transactions in South East Asia covering consulting for global patent Attorneys in executing:

Patent drafting & filing for B2C & B2B digital products

Protection of Mobile App’s Intellectual Property via Patents, Copyrights, Website Terms & Vendor Contracts

Wearable device’s patent portfolio protecting hardware, dashboard, app & data analytics software

Medical device patentability analysis, prior art search, provisional & complete patent drafting, patent claims & patent drawings, patent filing in India, PCT, USPTO & EPO, responding to USPTO, UKIPO, MyIPO (Malaysia) & SIPO (Singapore) office actions

Patent Landscape & Patentability Studies for innovations in Artificial Intelligence (AI & Chat bots), Internet of Things (IoT), Wearables, Driverless Cars, Virtual & Augmented Reality, 3D Printing, Drones, Mobile Payments (Digital Wallet) & FinTech

Assisting Clients with Complex Patent Issues: Patent Searches, Patent Drafting, Patent Filing, Patent Office Examinations, Patent Prosecution, Patent Due Diligence & Patent Litigation Strategy

Patent Strategy for International Patents, USPTO Filings, Drafting Office Action Response, Patent Reexaminations & Reissue Proceedings, Appeals to PTAB, Patent Office Trials, Inter Partes Review, Post-grant Review, Covered Business Method Patents, Interferences, Derivations & Appeals of PTAB Trial Decisions

European Patent Practice, Patent Oppositions, Appeals, EPO Third Party Observations, Central Limitation and Revocation, Supplementary Protection Certificates (SPC) & United Kingdom (UK) Patent Practice Advisory

Specialties: Litigation, Patent Litigation, Patent Infringement, Corporate & IP Strategy, Startups: Incorporation, Funding, Brand Management, Contracts & Agreements, Legal Research, SWOT, Corporate Governance, Due-diligence, Mergers & Acquisitions, Antitrust & Competition Laws, Regulatory Affairs, Freedom-to-Operate, Patent Drafting, Claim Drafting, Patent Searches, Office Actions Response, USPTO Patent appeal briefs, Patent Invalidation Analysis, Patent Opposition, Product-Claim Mapping, Patent Enforcement

Global Blockchain Lawyers (www.GlobalBlockchainLawyers.com) is a digital platform to discuss legal issues, latest technology and legal developments, and applicable laws in the dynamic field of Digital Currency, Blockchain, Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency and raising capital through the sale of tokens or coins (ICO or Initial Coin Offerings).

Blockchain ecosystem in India is evolving at a rapid pace and a proactive legal approach is required by blockchain lawyers in India to understand the complex nature of applicable laws and regulations.

Patent Intelligence

Patent attorneys are regularly approached by clients with existing innovations and patents, wherein such information is analysed extensively with regards to prior art (patent and non-patent publications), technology landscape and state of art patent searches to generate actionable business intelligence. Our in-house patent search experts provide effective solutions to determine white space, find risks, identify gems, and analyse patent portfolios, thereby adding immense value to achieve business goals of corporate executives, technologists, and investors. Patent intelligence reports also assist clients in decision making for the purposes of technology licensing, patent licensing and patent monetization opportunities.

Patent Monetization

Patent experts at our law firm assist clients in patent commercialization by decoding the complete potential of patents, that can form a major component of patent owner’s financial assets to be used as a competitive strategy for commercial success. Patent monetization process includes preparation of business goals to bring patents to market so that investments made in research and development can be recovered with profits, competitive advantage is gained in market, and credibility is strengthened as a leader in innovation and business.

Law Office of Rahul Dev, Patent Attorneys and Technology Corporate Lawyers, represents a law firm headquartered in Gurgaon, Haryana, with associate offices in New Delhi, in the proximity of the Indian Patent and Trademark Office. We are primarily focused on intellectual property law and provide patent services and patent consultation for large, multi-national corporations, universities, middle-market and emerging market companies, and startups and entrepreneurs.

We have successfully advised our clients to obtain patent protection in India and across international jurisdictions (US, Europe, UK, Singapore, Malaysia) for a wide scale of technologies, and our patent attorneys possess years of experience in patent research, patent prior art searches, patentability analysis, patent analytics, patent application drafting, patent claim drafting, patent prosecution, , licensing, and other intellectual property-related issues.

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Technology Business Corporate Lawyers

International Corporate Lawyers and Patent Attorneys 
 
 
 
Strong expertise in resolving business and personal disputes via mediation, negotiation and out of court settlements
Managing full practice law firm in Delhi and Gurgaon with team of legal experts – Civil and Criminal, Cyber Law Issues, Digital Business Disputes, Social Media Defamation, Personal, Property and Matrimonial Problems, Contracts and Agreements
 
Technology Savvy Advocates, Patent Attorneys & Corporate Lawyers with 11+ years of experience in Asia Pacific, US & Europe 
 
Experts in Litigation, Patent Protection, Licensing & Enforcement, Cross-border Mergers & Acquisitions, Joint Ventures, Foreign Direct Investment & Tech Transactions in South East Asia covering consulting for global patent Attorneys in executing:
 
Patent drafting & filing for B2C & B2B digital products
 
Protection of Mobile App’s Intellectual Property via Patents, Copyrights, Website Terms & Vendor Contracts
 
Wearable device’s patent portfolio protecting hardware, dashboard, app & data analytics software
 
Medical device patentability analysis, prior art search, provisional & complete patent drafting, patent claims & patent drawings, patent filing in India, PCT, USPTO & EPO, responding to USPTO, UKIPO, MyIPO (Malaysia) & SIPO (Singapore) office actions
 
Patent Landscape & Patentability Studies for innovations in Artificial Intelligence (AI & Chat bots), Internet of Things (IoT), Wearables, Driverless Cars, Virtual & Augmented Reality, 3D Printing, Drones, Mobile Payments (Digital Wallet) & FinTech 
 
Assisting Clients with Complex Patent Issues: Patent Searches, Patent Drafting, Patent Filing, Patent Office Examinations, Patent Prosecution, Patent Due Diligence & Patent Litigation Strategy
 
Patent Strategy for International Patents, USPTO Filings, Drafting Office Action Response, Patent Reexaminations & Reissue Proceedings, Appeals to PTAB, Patent Office Trials, Inter Partes Review, Post-grant Review, Covered Business Method Patents, Interferences, Derivations & Appeals of PTAB Trial Decisions
 
European Patent Practice, Patent Oppositions, Appeals, EPO Third Party Observations, Central Limitation and Revocation, Supplementary Protection Certificates (SPC) & United Kingdom (UK) Patent Practice Advisory
 
Specialties: Litigation, Patent Litigation, Patent Infringement, Corporate & IP Strategy, Startups: Incorporation, Funding, Brand Management, Contracts & Agreements, Legal Research, SWOT, Corporate Governance, Due-diligence, Mergers & Acquisitions, Antitrust & Competition Laws, Regulatory Affairs, Freedom-to-Operate, Patent Drafting, Claim Drafting, Patent Searches, Office Actions Response, USPTO Patent appeal briefs, Patent Invalidation Analysis, Patent Opposition, Product-Claim Mapping, Patent Enforcement

 

Software Patent FAQs:

How to Patent an Idea

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General Patent FAQs:

Journey of my blog from LinkedIn to 30+ news portals

Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

Flagship Speaking Engagements

Patent Forum (Munich, Germany) | News Channels | Ministry of Corporate Affairs | ASSOCHAM | FICCI | Brand Licensing India | BioEnergy International

Featured Publications

Economic Times | The Hindu | BioSpectrum | International Bar Association | LawAsia | SwissInfo | Global Legal Post | HT Live Mint | Outlook Money

Patent Attorney in New York

Top rated and highly experienced patent lawyers in New York can be found by searching USPTO database or by reviewing patent law firms comprising patent attorneys (patent agents) registered to practice before USPTO. Inventors in New York can personally interview multiple patent lawyers before selecting the patent attorney best suited to address their needs. Clients can also explore cities in the vicinity of New York, including, Brooklyn, Cedarhurst, Elizabeth, Garden City, Flushing, Bronx, Jamaica, Staten Island, Hackensack etc. and can also research patent attorneys practicing related areas, like Intellectual Property, Copyrights, Trademarks, Trade Secrets, Cyber Laws, Technology Laws, and the like.

Technology Development in New York

As it is well known, New York is the financial, business, trademark, and fashion focal point of the world, and hence, many global businesses and financial corporations are headquartered there. New York is a great place to launch innovative products due to the tech savvy residents. Recently, it was reported that a mobile application has been launched to apply for Food Stamps in New York. It is well known that about 1.7 million people in New York City receive food stamps and to qualify, they must produce dozens of documents to prove their eligibility, including birth certificates, pay stubs, leases and children’s school records. It is really problematic to gather, copy and bring the documents to a social services office, and then wait to be seen by a worker. New York city’s welfare agency, the Human Resources Administration, plans to ease this step with the help of a new cellphone app, wherein those seeking food stamps can take pictures of the required documents with their phones and upload the photos to the mobile application.

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications (Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech)

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firms with significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filingspatent services in India and global patent consulting services.

Law office of Rahul Dev is a niche technology and research based law firm focusing on next generation business and legal issues faced in India and outside India during international business and cross-border technology transactions. We assist our clients in close collaboration with our associates and counsels within India and outside by providing custom engagement models to address our client’s needs.

Practice areas include drafting and filing patent applications, patent prior art searches, patent prosecution, patent filing in India, PCT national phase entry in India, PCT international applications with WIPO, freedom to operate searches, patentability analysis and patent strategy to create a valuable patent portfolio.

Patent attorney Rahul Dev works with clients providing expert legal services in the field of innovative pharmaceutical products, branded drugs, generic drugs, molecular biology, immunology, cell biology, regenerative medicine including ESCs, iPSCs, pSCs, diagnostics, therapeutics, theranostics, drug delivery systems, host-vector systems, high throughput screening, bioinformatics, diagnostic imaging, ancillary services (PET, CT, MRI, ultrasound, greenlight, lithotripsy, radiation therapy, cyber-knife, nuclear camera, clinical lab, pathology, physical therapy and dispensing prescriptions).

Patent attorney and technology lawyer Rahul Dev works closely with USPTO licensed patent attorneys to assist clients with patent reexaminations, patent prosecution, drafting USPTO office action responses, patent infringement litigation, patent claim mapping and patent licensing. For international patent filings, we have an established network of global patent attorneys to provide reliable and cost effective services to our clients.

Trademark laws and regulations in India are a combination of domestic laws and international treaties, including Madrid Protocol and Agreement. Brand owners can register their trademarks in India by filing trademark applications after conducting brand clearance searches in the relevant classes of goods and services. International brand owners can also obtain trademark protection in India by using international treaty governed by WIPO under Madrid Protocol.

trademark lawyer in India for madrid filings

Trademark Searching

Conducting a trademark search is important to know if the mark is already in use by a third party. The mark which you wish to protect may already have been registered or the rights to use that mark may already have been assigned. Furthermore, if the search results reveal that the mark is already registered, the investment in trademark search would save various costs, including the trademark filing fees. The search conducted by our team is an exact match search for the mark or logo in the particular class of goods.

Trademark Filing

On behalf of our clients, we prepare and file trademark applications in India. With our established network of trademark attorneys across the world, we assist our clients in international registration of their marks in multiple jurisdictions.

Trademark Prosecution & Licensing

Trademark prosecution in India includes filing a trademark application with the Indian Trademark Office (“IPO”) and arguing against any Examination Report (Office Action) received from the Registrar of Trademarks. The trademark prosecution process begins when an application for a trademark registration is filed either claiming prior usage (to be filed with affidavit of use with evidence), or, a proposed to be used trademark application.

We believe registering a trademark serves as a launch pad for a business. Our team provides all prosecution services necessary for registration of a mark, including filing applications, responding to office actions, recording assignments and maintaining registration. Our team prepares and analyses Trademark Licensing Documentation considering the quality control needs of our clients.

Trademark Law Case Study

It is well known that the acronym “WWF” was coined in 1980 when Vince MacMohan Jr. established the company Titan Sports. Since then, WWF, or “World Wrestling Federation” became a leading brand name in the field of wrestling worldwide.

international trademark filing in india

In 2001, WWF officially got rebranded as WWE, or “World Wrestling Entertainment”, primarily due to legal reasons. The legal battle was fought between WWF (World Wide Fund) and WWF (World Wrestling Federation), and a London court ruled against the wrestling brand. Even after challenging the ruling, wrestling body could not succeed and subsequently, WWF was rebranded as WWE.

As a PR move, WWE even used “Get The ‘F’ Out” as marketing slogan.

This case study highlights the importance of trademark laws for business growth and appropriate steps must be taken by the brand owners to protect their brand, without infringing upon third party rights. Henceforth, trademark due diligence is extremely crucial for brand owners.

Trademark Due Diligence

Our team of specialized trademark attorneys is capable of performing extensive Due Diligence for the purposes of Trademark Litigation in various jurisdictions, or for the purposes of Mergers and Acquisitions, and the like.

Get Trademark Registered in India by hiring professional trademark lawyer in India. Currently, pendency in trademark examination of brand application filed for the registration of a trademark has been brought to less than a month. Trademark filed in late December, 2016 and trademark application filed in January 2017 are already in process of trademark examination. Recently, our client’s trademark has been Advertised before Acceptance in less than 3 weeks from trademark filing date.

So, by following the ten step process get Trademark Registered in India in 30 days.

  1. Coin a brand name for trademark registration
  2. Select the appropriate Trademark class for your brand
  3. Avoid filing multi class trademark application in class 99
  4. Conduct a trademark search online at Indian Trademark website
  5. Expedite the digitation process by filing online trademark
  6. Get digital signature for signing online trademark forms
  7. Get proprietor code for filing trademark in India
  8. File TM-A Form for Trademark Registration in India
  9. Attach Stamped Power of Attorney (POA) while filing the trademark in India
  10. Wait for formal response from trademark office and reply trademark objection within one month of receiving the formal response

Attention All Trademark Owners who filed Trademark applications in India

According to trademark notice issued by Trade Marks Registry in India, it has identified many trademark applications filed before December 2016 failed at 1st stage of formality check pass. Therefore, those trademark applications have not been examined in India due to compliance issues.

The list of filed Trademark applications has been published as follows:

The Trade Marks Registry in India has directed the trademark attorneys and brand agents to comply with the pending issues for the trademark applications that have failed in Formality check. As a trademark owner you should check if your brand is in this list. Refer the details of trademark filing deficiency and requirement raised by the trademark office. The trademark applicants should email at pendingexam.tmr@nic.in, with brief details of such brand applications to remove existing objection and comply with the same.

Example of Trademark compliance issue in India

While taking up the above application for examination under the provisions of Trade Mark Act, 1999 and Trade Marks Rules 2002, it is observed that trademark application could not proceed to examination because of the following reason/s:
* Power of Attorney (TM-48) is not found enclosed along with the trademark application.
* You are required to provide TM-48 with necessary stamp duty..

Therefore, trademark applicants and their trademark agents should include the following details while mailing at pendingexam.tmr@nic.in and and send the hard copy to the concerned office of Trade Marks Registry:

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As strategic patent counsel, we work with clients in aligning the patent prosecution process with client’s core business strategies, in addition to drafting patent claims, patent application preparation and prosecution focused on securing patents, determining freedom-to-operate rights, and analysing validity of granted patents.

We serve as patent prosecution attorney for clients across a wide range of sectors, including, computer software, mobile applications, aeronautics, automobiles, internet of things, robotics, artificial intelligence, blockchain, cryptocurrency and drones, as well as manufacturers. In life science category, clients range from healthcare, biotechnology, pharmaceutical, energy and environmental industries.

As patent attorney with expertise in software patents and mobile app patents along with Internet of Things (IoT), we regularly advise clients to embody business methods as technology patents because a business method patent can serve as a powerful asset for companies to leverage their intellectual property assets. At the beginning of the patent process, we determine the patentability, scope and enforceability of the innovate process and product. Patent attorney also works with clients in securing patents for clean technology sector, including, green technology inventions, energy generation, conservation, renewable energy inventions, etc.

Patent attorneys generally possess dual qualification in technology and law, mostly with advanced degrees in technical fields such as pharmaceuticals, mathematics, chemistry, biochemistry, genetics and aeronautics. At Law Office of Rahul Dev — Tech Corp Law Group, we assist clients as a team of professionals having prior work experience in technical fields such as engineering and manufacturing, aerospace, robotics, plastics, computer software, biochemistry, molecular biology and neuroscience. Our core patent services include, patent research, patent analytics, patent searching, patent prosecution, non-infringement and freedom to operate opinions, technology transactions and licensing, as well as alternate dispute resolution and commercial litigation.

As licensed patent attorney, we represent clients during the entire patent registration process in India, including filing of patent applications and trademark applications. We advise clients regarding duration of a patent and a trademark, patent and trademark renewals, patent filing forms, patent filing fee, trademark filing forms, trademark filing fee, protecting process and product both by patents, protecting brand and logo both by trademarks, analysing patent portfolio for strength and weaknesses, etc.

Rahul Dev, Patent attorney in India, has conducted sessions for clients to convey the message that patent provides a strong protection for innovations, and having patent rights in India can help in resolving patent-related problems in addition to protection of intellectual property rights.

We work with clients to formulate a long-term patent strategy to protect the patentable inventions, drafting of patent applications, filing patent applications in India, initiating legal actions against patent infringing parties, along with developing custom-tailored solutions to complex patent and legal matters.

Law Office of Patent Attorney Rahul Dev provides comprehensive solutions to all intellectual property needs of clients, including patent filing services in India. We operate as a close network of patent attorneys, patent agents and patent lawyers enrolled with Indian patent office and bar councils in India.

We assist individual researchers and inventors who develop novel and inventive technologies by searching relevant prior art (patent database and non-patent literature), determining patentability of invention, drafting patent applications, filing domestic and international patent applications in India, filing design applications in India, filing trademark applications in India, providing offshore patent services to global patent attorneys and patent law firms, providing patent outsourcing services, and the like.

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyerpracticing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications(Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech)

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firmswith significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filingspatent services in India and global patent consulting services.

We represent our clients as leading patent lawyer in Gurgaon and patent attorney in Gurgaon for providing various patent services in India.

 

International Trademark Filing in India – The Madrid Protocol

  1. India adopted Madrid Protocol in 2013
  2. The Madrid Protocol is a WIPO administered treaty to simplify the process of filing trademarks across multiple jurisdictions
  3. Trademark applications can be filed in India under the Madrid Protocol when India is either the origin country or the designated country
  4. If India is the origin country, the Indian Trademarks Registry (TMR) will receive the applications for international registrations of trademark
  5. If India is the designated country, the international trademark application is filed with WIPO selecting India as the designated country

trademark attorney lawyer law firm in india

Replying to Provisional refusal in India under Madrid Protocol

International Trademarks and Brand Protection

Provisional refusal in India under Madrid Protocol Services

Provisional refusal in India under Madrid Protocol: Although, it is not possible to register a particular brand as “International Trademark”, the Madrid Protocol system provides an easy solution to the companies and individuals if the country in which they want to register their trademark has signed up the Madrid Protocol.

India signed up for Madrid Protocol With WIPO in the year 2013. Madrid System, including Madrid Agreement and Protocol relating to Madrid Agreement, is an international treaty to facilitate international registration of trademarks and management of trademark applications worldwide.

How Madrid Protocol Trademark System Works in Favour of  Brand & Trademark Owners

It can be used to file and register the trademark in the home country, for example, resident of India will file trademark in India first and subsequently be able to secure wider trademark protection globally. Once the Indian trademark application is filed before the Indian Trademark Office, one can extend the trademark registration in other countries by using a single trademark application. The details of the single trademark application should include desired countries in which you want to seek trademark protection.

Overall costs for filing trademark under Madrid protocol will depend on the applicable official government fees of the designated countries in which you are applying to register your trademark brand, and the number of trademark classes.

Filing International Trademark Applications Under Madrid Protocol With WIPO – Procedure, Cost and Requirements for Indian Trademarks

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Madrid Agreement and Madrid Protocol – Governing Treaties

The treaties provide an easy and cost effective way of filing international trademarks. Once the trademarks are registered by respective designated offices, the Madrid protocol further provides simple procedures to manage international registrations.

Provisional refusal in India under Madrid Protocol: Office of Origin

The trademark office that receives application under Madrid protocol is known as office of origin.

Provisional refusal in India under Madrid Protocol: Designated Offices

The trademark applicant can designate one or more trademark offices as contracting party, which is then notified about filing of trademark application under Madrid protocol by WIPO.

Provisional refusal in India under Madrid Protocol: Madrid Protocol Application – General Procedure

Usually, once the international trademark application is filed with designation of countries with the office of origin, the contents of said application are verified by said office of origin. Once done, the application is forwarded to WIPO, which is then published by WIPO and subsequently, WIPO notifies all the designated offices. Thereafter, each designated office examines the trademark application as per respective trademark laws, rules and procedures.

Madrid Trademark Application in India

The Indian Trademark Office is authorized to receive an international trademark application under Madrid Protocol.

Madrid Trademark Application in India – Requirements

The basic criteria to file Madrid Trademark Application in India requires applicant to be eligible to file said trademark application, which essentially requires the applicant to be an Indian national or having a place of business in India. In addition, the Indian trademark office requires an existing trademark application, known as the basic application, and designation of one or more countries wherein international trademark protection is required.

Documents Required for Filing Trademarks in India

The Indian Trademark Office requires an international trademark application under Madrid Protocol to be accompanied by an application form, power of attorney, payment of handling fee, and payment of international designation fee (in Swiss Francs) payable to WIPO.

Madrid Trademark Application – Role of Office of Origin

During the process of receiving an application for international trademark registration under Madrid System, the office of origin plays an important role. After receiving the application, the office of origin verifies the contents, certifies the application and forwards it to WIPO for publication and notification to designated offices. Subsequently, the office of origin receives details of irregularities in the application, if any, and further communicates with WIPO regarding status of basic trademark application.

Responding to Provisional Refusal from the Indian Trademark Office under Madrid Protocol

The Indian Trademark Office examines every international trademark registration designating India received from the International Bureau of WIPO. An International Registration Designating India (IRDI) number is allotted by the Trade Marks Registry to every International Registration in which India has been designated. The trademark examiner examines the Brand trademark on the ground of non-distinctiveness and similarities to registered trademarks and pending trademarks before the Indian Trademark Registry.

While examining the trademark application, if there is any objection for protection of such trademark registration in India, a provisional refusal is notified to the International Bureau of WIPO within 18 months from the date the international registration was notified to India.

General objections raised by Trademark Registry in India | Trademark Objections under Provisional Refusal In India

9(1){a) under Indian Trademark Law- The objection is raised under S 9(1) (a) of the Trade Marks Act 1999, as the mark is non-distinctive and as such it is not capable of distinguishing the services of one person from those of others.,
11(1) under Indian Trademark Law – The objection is raised under S 11 (1) of the Trade Marks Act, 1999, as the mark is identical with or similar to earlier marks in respect of identical or similar description of services and because of such identity or similarity there exists a likelihood of confusion on the part of the public.

The provisional refusal includes an Examination Report containing objections. The International Bureau records the provisional refusal in the international register and provides the details of such provisional refusal to the trademark applicant of the international registration.

The provisional refusal is recorded in the International Register, together with an indication of the date on which the notification was sent. The provisional refusal is also published in the WIPO Gazette, with an indication as to whether the refusal is total (i.e. relates to all the goods and services covered by the designation) or partial (i.e., relates to only some of those goods and and services covered)

Responding to Provisional Refusal Issued by the Indian Trademark Office under the Madrid Protocol

The trademark applicant can respond to the provisional refusal by engaging a trademark agent or an  Indian trademark attorney having address in India by executing a Power of Attorney in the favour of the agent/attorney.

Follow the Deadline Dates | Trademark Response Deadline to Respond to the Objections:

The normal deadline to respond to trademark objections raised by the Indian Trademark Office is 1 month from the date of receipt of the provisional refusal notification by the trademark applicant. Technically, once the trademark applicant receives the provisional refusal notification from the International Bureau of WIPO the last date to respond to provisional refusal can be calculated.

Note:  If you have opted to receive notifications from the International Bureau of WIPO by paper mail, it is advisable to retain the postal receipt. So, if there is a delay by the post the date of receipt of the provisional refusal from WIPO, the postal receipt will act as documentary evidence.

What to do if you miss the deadline / extension of timeline to respond to trademark objections raised by the Indian Trademark Office?

The Indian trademark attorney can file an application for extension of time and the same is at the discretion of the trademark office. The Trade Marks Registry (TMR) office of India then considers the response of the trademark applicant of the international registration and may either confirm the refusal or move for advertisement of the international registration in the Trade Marks Journal.

Amending detailed description of different trademark goods/services:

Any amendments in goods/services in respect of the Indian trademark application needs to be made only at the International Bureau of WIPO and the same needs to be notified to the Indian Trademark Office by the International Bureau of WIPO.

Relevant legal provisions in Indian Trademark Law for International Trademark Applications Filed under Madrid Protocol

A new interpretation/definition clause has been inserted in accordance with the Madrid Protocol in Indian Trademark Law (S.36B read with Rule 67A).

Applicant or registered proprietor of trademark under section 18 or under section 23 (‘basic application’ or ‘basic registration’) of the Act may make an international application in Form MM2 (E) along with prescribed fees in Swiss francs.

The Registrar shall certify & forward it to the International Bureau within two months from the date of receipt of the said application & for this, a fee of INR 2000 is payable to the Registrar towards handling charges (S. 36D read with Rule 67E & 67F).

A separate record for international registration where India has been designated shall be kept by the Registrar called the ‘Record of Particulars of International Registration (S. 36E read with Rule 67G).

For a period of five years from the date of an international registration, if the initial basic national application/registration ceases to have effect, through a withdrawal, refusal, cancellation following a decision of the Office of origin, or Court, or voluntary cancellation, or non-renewal, the international registration will no longer be protected. After the expiry of a period of five years from the date of international registration, the registration becomes independent of the basic registration or basic application (S.36D & S.36E).
Provided that, where an appeal is made against the decision of registration nd an action requesting withdrawal of application or an opposition to the application has been initiated before the expiry of the period of five years of an international registration, any final decision resulting in withdrawal, cancellation, expiration or refusal shall be deemed to have taken place before the expiry of five years of the international registration. (Provision of Sub-section 5 of Section 36D).
The Registrar shall examine the application within 2 months where India has been designated. If grounds for objection are found during the examination by the Registrar, or if an opposition is filed, the Registrar can declare a provisional refusal (within 18 months of receipt of the application’s notification from the International Bureau for India) for protection of the mark in that member country (S.36E read with Rule 67H).

The international registration of a trade mark at the International Bureau shall be for a period of ten years and may be renewed for a period of ten years from the expiry of the preceding period and subject to payment of a surcharge prescribed by the rules, a grace period of six months shall be allowed for renewal of the international registration (s. 36G).

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyerpracticing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications(Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech)

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firms with significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filingspatent services in India and global patent consulting services.

We represent our clients as leading patent lawyer in Gurgaon and patent attorney in Gurgaon for providing various patent services in India.

 

Software Patent in India

Software and Mobile App Patents are routinely granted by the Indian Patent Office and recently, following patents were granted:

(a) Google LLC filed patent application 3023/KOLP/2014 that is titled LOCATION HISTORY FILTERING. The invention is about filtering location information received from multiple computing devices . During patent examination, the patent examiner raised objections under Section 3(k) of the Indian Patents Act, wherein the examiner stated that the claims 1-14 define computer instructions stored in a memory and executable by a processor, hence these claims fall within the scope of Section 3(k) of the Indian Patent Act.

As a response to said objection, the applicant responded by proving that the claims are not related to computer programs but a computing device, enhancing its technical effect through its constructional features.

(b) ORACLE INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION filed patent application 231/KOLNP/2010 that is titled A SYSTEM AND METHOD FOR PREPARING COMPENDED BLOGS. During patent examination, the patent examiner raised objections under Section 3(k) of the Indian Patents Act, wherein the examiner stated that the claims 1-10 were computer programme per se and were thus non patentable.

As a response to said objection, the applicant responded by submitting Computer programs ‘per se’ are not non patentable as per the CRI guidelines. Since present claims provide a technical solution to a technical problem of collecting and collating information into a single blog, it qualifies to be patented.

Mobile App Patent in India

We are experiencing a paradigm shift in technology from the use of Software to Mobile Apps (Applications) to integration with Cloud Computing, which has resulted in the emerging field of IoT, or Internet of Things.

Here are 5 steps to draft patent claims and write patent applications for inventions and technologies belonging to the field of Software, Mobile Apps, Cloud Computing or Internet of Things (IoT):

  1. Thoroughly understand the innovation as a problem-solution approach
  2. Prepare flow diagrams (flowcharts) to cover all aspects of the processes disclosed by the innovation
  3. Prepare system architecture (block diagrams) illustrating all hardware elements connected via network
  4. Ensure proper sync between the flowcharts and block diagrams
  5. Draft patent claims (system or apparatus) covering all elements of block diagrams along with process (method) claims

Patent Claim Drafting

Software Patent Application Drafting Guidelines

Writing Software Patent Application

Writing Software Patent Application is an art. An experienced patent attorney or patent agent can draft software patent claims that may have broader scope of the invention. However, the purpose of this post is to provide inventors with a general idea how to draft a patent application for a software patent invention.

First and foremost, every software patent specification must be tailored for a particular invention solving one problem in the prior art domain. There is no “one single patent formula to be followed” to write a perfect software patent application. The most important aspect of software patent writing which should be kept in mind while writing the software patent application is the patent claims, which define the legal rights of the patent owner.

It is always advisable to get professional help for writing the software invention and prosecuting the patent application before the patent office. The software inventor should provide flowcharts and/or flow diagrams of different embodiments of the software based intelligent algorithm to the patent attorney.

Software Patentability / Prior Art Patent Search

Conduct a patentability search of the prior art available in the public domain is advisable before filing the software patent application. The software patent strategy includes the steps of reviewing non-patent literature documents like journal, newspaper articles,  magazine articles, books, conference materials, brochures, and research reports.

The online patent database (collection of granted patents and pending published patent applications available in public domain by the patent office) of USPTO, WIPO, EPO and the like should be searched to determine novelty of your software innovation. This can be done either by looking for keywords in the abstract text, specification, patent title, patent claims and by the International patent classification numbers, USPC and CPC assigned to each patent by the patent examiner.

Patentability Search Results / Patentability Opinion

The patentability search results of the invention will provide detailed insight to the inventor about how broadly one can claim the invention. Moreover, the patent language used by other patent attorneys to claim a similar invention provides a rough roadmap to describe your own software innovation.

Advantage of Patentability Search   

The main advantage of patentability search from the viewpoint of developing a strong patent claim strategy is that the identified close prior art patent claims should be avoided. Particularly, the patent claims should be written in a manner to avoid the prior art.

Software Patents in India – Laws, Cases, Granted Patent Examples – Copyright Protection

How to get Software Patents in India

Grant of Software Patents in India is possible. Patents filed for innovations relating to computer programs, software and mobile applications protect the novel and inventive features of such innovations from being copied by the competitors. Software Patents in India is granted for an embedded software in a mobile application, and/or software plus hardware combination. However, patent law in India does not allow patent protection for software per se, whereby patenting a computer program is prohibited. This provision is stated in Section 3 of the Indian Patents Act, which related to Non-Patentable Inventions.

Why are Software Patents not available in India?  

When the set of patent claims are written for web based software just stating various method steps and without disclosing what apparatus and/or structural component are carried out by the said steps in that case the invention falls within scope of clause (m) of section (3) of the Patents Act, 1970 (as amended).

There should be structural limitations to the patent claims otherwise the subject matter of these claims is mere scheme and/or mental act and hence falls within scope of clause (m) of section (3) of the Patents Act, 1970 (as amended). Therefore web software invention claimed in said claims is not patentable.

When the patent claims do not define any structural features of the claimed product rather they define computer instructions and logic in that case the instructions and/or logics are nothing but computer program per se. Hence subject matter of said claims falls within scope of clause (k) of section (3) of the Patents Act, 1970 (as amended). Therefore web software invention claimed in said claims is not patentable.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Software Patents in India

Are software inventions patentable in India?

Yes, innovations in the field of software and mobile applications can be patented in India. The Indian patent office defines software inventions under the category of Computer Related Inventions, one or more features of which are embodied wholly or partially by means of a computer program(s). Such inventions have been described in the guidelines published by the patent office for examination of computer related inventions, or CRIs.

Generally, patent applications covering subject matter related to software inventions have been divided into different categories by the patent office, including, (i) Method / Process, (ii) Apparatus / System, (iii) Computer readable medium, and, (iv) Computer Program Product.

In case of patent claims claiming a method or a process, the patent office excludes business methods, mathematical formulae, algorithms, and computer programs per se. Specifically, if method claims or process claims relate to computer related innovations having novel and inventive aspects, such method claims are patentable in accordance with Indian patent laws.

In case of patent claims claiming an apparatus or a system, the patent office has stated that patents can be granted to computer related inventions wherein novelty, inventive step, and industrial applicability is found by way of hardware combined with software applications. In use, such claims may be patented in “means plus function” format.

While drafting software patents and writing patent claims, use of means-plus-function claim is common. Specifically, while drafting patent claims, means-plus-function claims can be used to express technical and functional terms of the invention to describe multiple aspects of the invention.

In case of patent claims claiming Computer readable medium, or, Computer Program Products, the Indian patent office categorizes such patent claims as computer programs per se, and hence such claims may not be patented in accordance with Indian patent laws.

Software Patents Granted in India

Patent applications claiming computer related innovations, software and mobile applications can be patented in India if patent claims are drafted to protect the innovative aspects of such inventions. Specifically, the innovative aspects can include inventive process / methods along with inventive apparatus / system (hardware components).

Some examples of software patents granted in India are listed below:

Software Patents Examples

  1. Indian patent application number 3803/CHENP/2008 titled “DISAGGREGATED SECURE EXECUTION ENVIRONMENT” has been granted by the Indian patent office on 19th Sept., 2016. This patent claims priority from US patent US11/353,675 with PCT International Application Number as PCT/US2007/002322. The subject matter of this patent relates to, an electronic device, such as, a computer, which may be adapted for self-monitoring for compliance to an operating policy. The operating policy may specify a pay-per-use or subscription business model and measurements associated with compliant usage. A secure execution environment may measure usage in accordance with the business model as well as monitor and enforce compliance to the operating policy To increase the difficulty of attacking or otherwise disabling the secure execution environment, elements of the secure execution environment may be distributed. The distribution points may include other functional elements of the computer, such as interface circuits, or may even be remotely located over a network. An implementation method for disaggregating the secure execution environment is also disclosed.
  2. Indian patent application number 5992/DELNP/2005 titled “A SYSTEM FACILITATING A COMPUTER OBJECT ACCESS CONTROL” has been granted as Indian patent number 247539 on 18th April, 2011 by the Indian patent office. This patent claims priority from US patent US10/609,104 having PCT International Application number as PCT/US2004/019987. The subject matter of this patent relates to a system facilitating a computer object access control for controlling access to the computer objects, comprising: a computer display screen, a graphical user interface (100), a name field (102) indicating a name for the computer object; and one or more access control fields (110) rendered together and indicating plural selectable computer spaces (112C-112E) for the computer object, at least one of the computer spaces corresponding to a computer location and at least one of the computer spaces (112A, 112B, 112F) corresponding to access to the computer object for one or more computer users.

How To Apply For Software Patents in India

In light of the Indian patent laws and guidelines published by the Indian patent office for examination of software patents / computer related inventions (CRIs), software patents can be applied in India by way of combination of hardware and software features, which are novel, inventive and possess industrial applications.

More specifically, the software patent applications filed in India shall claim innovative methods including all the steps of flow diagram of the software applications along with novel hardware (apparatus / system claims) claims including elements of the system architecture embodying the corresponding methods / processes.

Software Patent Cases In India

Among multiple patent cases in India, few can be put in the category of software patent cases in India, wherein issues pertaining to software patenting in India have been discussed. Some of the important software patent cases are discussed herein below.

1. Electronic Navigation Research Institute Vs Controller General of Patents

IPAB, OA/26/2009/PT/DEL, 5th July, 2013

In this case relating to patent application no. 3624/DELNP/2005 for the invention titled “A CHAOS THEROETICAL EXPONENT VALUE CALCULATION SYSTEM”, the Indian patent office denied the patent on the grounds that said invention falls under the category of mathematical formulae even if it produces a technical effect. The invention in this case claimed a mathematical method for evaluating time series signals.

2. Yahoo v Controller of Patents & Rediffcom India Limited

IPAB, OA/22/2010/PT/CH, 8th December 2011

Section 3(k) of the Indian Patents Act was discussed in this case before the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB), wherein it the concerned patent application was held non-patentable as being the business method embodied via technology. The order passed by the IPAB in instant case stated that where technical advances are only a manifestation of a core business method, such advances shall not accord any advantage to the patentee in the allowance of the patent. In simple words, business methods disguised as technical subject matter without any innovative aspects cannot be patented in India.

In the case of Yahoo, the patent claims included features of a software tool targeting search terms relevant to Yahoo’s business. Accordingly, the IPAB concluded that the technical advance proposed by Yahoo was simply a method of doing business, even if it was a technically smarter way of doing business and, therefore, cannot be patented in accordance with provisions of Section 3(k) of the patents act.

3. ACCENTURE GLOBAL SERVICE GMBH Vs. THE ASSISTANT CONTROLLER OF PATENTS & DESIGNS

IPAB, OA/22/2009/PT/DEL, 28th December, 2012

This case relates to Indian patent application number 1398/DELNP/2003, which is now a granted patent as patent number 256171, whose present legal status at the patent office database is, “Inforce with Due date of next renewal as 21/02/2017”. This patent application was initially refused for patent registration by patent office under the provisions of Section 3(k) of the Indian patents act.

However, the patent applicant appealed before the IPAB and as per the Controller’s decision, it was held that the instant invention as claimed is not software per se but, a system is claimed which is having the improvement in web services and software. Accordingly, it was held that the invention since not falling in the category of section 3(K), viz software per se, corresponding objection was waived and the patent was granted.

Software Copyright In India

What is meant by software copyright?

In addition to software patents, copyright protection can also be used to protect the Intellectual Property Rights associated with the software. Essentially, copyright for software is employed by software companies to reduce and prevent unauthorized copying of the software, which is also referred to as software piracy or software infringement. In case of software offered under free and open source licenses, software owners depend upon the copyright law to enforce their legal rights.

Overview of Indian Copyright Laws for Software Protection

In accordance with Indian copyright laws, computer software can be protected as literary works, wherein a “computer program” is defined as a set of statements or instructions to be used directly or indirectly in a computer in order to bring about a certain result.

Software Copyright In India

Effectively, copyright protection for computer programs prohibits unauthorised copying and infringement of the computer program, including the structure and the design of the computer program.

In addition to the source code, additional aspects of the computer program and the software can be protected by filing appropriate copyrights for the graphics, sounds, and appearance of a computer program. Consequently, by filing multiple copyright applications to protect different aspects of the software / computer program, legal proceedings for intellectual property infringement can be initiated and IP rights can be enforced even if the source code of the software is not copied by the offending party / infringer.

In addition, it is also advisable to protect future modifications and improvements of the software and the computer program by way of multiple copyrights and patent applications, which can provide strong protection of various technical features and different aspects of the software.

End User License Agreement – EULA

An EULA is a legal contract between the author or publisher of a software program / mobile application and the user of such application. The EULA is crucial document relating to intellectual property rights associated with the software and the computer program and it is generally executed digitally wherein the users are required to click-through and accept the terms of the software license agreement. Various provisions of the license agreement are drafted to ensure the source code and other aspects of the software / computer program are not copied and / or reverse engineered by the users illegally, which may amount to intellectual property rights infringement of the author / publisher / owner of the software program.

Drafting End User License Agreement – EULA

Generally, a software license agreement is termed as EULA or End User License Agreement. EULA is aimed at defining the relationship between the software company and its customers or clients that primarily govern the rights and usage associated with the software purchased by the clients from the software development company.

Types of Software License Agreements

Various types of software license agreements include:

  1. Singe User Software License Agreement
  2. Multi User Software License Agreement
  3. Local Reseller Software License Agreement
  4. International Reseller Software License Agreement
  5. Enterprise Software License Agreement
  6. Non-profit Software License Agreement
  7. Privacy Policy for Data Protection

EULA Clauses

Content of EULA includes important legal provisions, such as, for example, but not limited to:

  1. General Information of Parties
  2. Software License Details – Term, Duration, Date etc.
  3. Price of Software License
  4. Ownership of Software Code
  5. Intellectual Property Rights and Copyright Ownership
  6. Prevention of Software Abuse
  7. Prevention of Copying, Modification, Redistribution and Reselling of Software
  8. Definition of Software License, which may not amount to selling of software ownership
  9. Legal Disclaimers and Warranties
  10. Limitation of Liability
  11. Right to Terminate Software License
  12. Exclusive or Non-Exclusive Software License
  13. Non transferable license
  14. Breach of terms and termination provision
  15. Governing Laws and Jurisdictions
  16. Technical and Customer Support
  17. Software Restriction Clauses
  18. Contact Information

Assignment of Software Copyright

In accordance with Indian laws and the Delhi High Court judgement in the case of Pine Labs Private Limited vs Gemalto Terminals India Private Limited, the author of the source code owns the original copyright of the software program and the same is required to be assigned to the owner / publisher of the software by way of Software (Intellectual Property) Assignment Contract. Furthermore, while drafting software assignment contracts, the term of assignment and jurisdiction should be clearly specified to ensure perpetual ownership of the software worldwide.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Software Copyright in India

Whether computer Software or Computer Programme can be registered under copyright law?

As specified by the Indian Copyright Office, copyrights pertaining to software and computer program can be registered by way of one or more copyright applications to protect corresponding intellectual property rights (IPRs). In accordance with the Indian Copyright laws, Computer Software or programme can be registered as a ‘literary work’. As per Section 2 (o) of the Copyright Act, 1957 “literary work” includes computer programmes, tables and compilations, including computer databases. ‘Source Code’ has also to be supplied along with the application for registration of copyright for software products.

How do you get a copyright for software?

The first step to obtain copyright protection for a software / computer program is to determine if the subject matter of said software / computer program is eligible for copyright protection. An experienced copyright attorney or intellectual property law firm can assist in determining whether one or more aspects of the computer program / software are protectable by a copyright. As per copyright laws across multiple jurisdictions, a copyright protects “original works of authorship” that are in a tangible form or expression.

Manual of Patent Office Practice and Procedure of Software Patents in India

The Indian patent office has published a manual of patent office practice and procedure, which explains the functioning of the patent office by describing multiple steps of the patent registration process in India, including, patent application filing, patent prosecution, patent examination, issuance of patent examination report, patent hearings, patent grant, issuance of patent certificate, pre-grant patent opposition, post-grant patent opposition, and renewal of granted patents in India.

Software Patent in India – Indian Patent Office Manual

After going through the patent office manual, it can be concluded that although Indian patent laws excludes business methods, mathematical formulae and computer programs per se from patent protection, software patents can be granted in India for innovations that are able to stand the test of patentability.

Writing a Provisional Software Patent Specification to be filed before USPTO

Writing Software Patent Application

Essentially, a provisional patent application based for software innovation includes:

  • Title of the invention
  • A short abstract (150 words maximum)
  • Background of the invention and related Prior arts
  • Detailed description/Specification describing how to make and use the invention. Flowcharts and/ flow diagram to execute the software algorithm
  • Patent Claims not required for a provisional patent specification

Tips For Writing Non-Provisional Software Patent Application

Step 1: Prepare rough flow diagram illustrating main steps of executing the algorithm.

Step 2: Prepare detailed flowcharts illustrating detailed steps along with determination steps as to what will happen if a particular transition step takes place.

Step 3: Software based block diagrams can be prepared to show more details for particular steps.

Once, the above mentioned diagram are handy write the patent application detailed description section describing what is done at each step of the algorithm and how to do it. As required under Section 112 of US Patent Laws, describe both the best way to perform the best mode or preferred embodiment of the invention and all the possible other embodiments that you can think of to execute the software based codes to solve the problem.

Mobile Application Patent Drafting

Guide to Software Patenting

Strong patent claim drafting skills can make the difference for a grant of software patent application by the patent examiner. However, writing a patent specification for information technology domain, software business app or mobile applications, cloud computing or IoT (Internet of Things), and subsequently drafting the required patent claims are highly technical in nature.

As a patent drafter, the real skill is to write about all the different sections of a patent application in detail and at the same time it has to be precise, as these have to be in accordance with proper formats specified by the respective patent office. Specifically, writing patent claims is most important part of patent drafting process.

Most important sections in a software patent application:

  • Patent claims (independent patent claims and dependent patent claims)
  • Writing about one or more embodiments, and
  • Flow diagram and/ flow chart providing details of the algorithm

Software program is not a tangible object and they may not be patentable under the definition that a new, useful, and non-obvious process or product is a patentable subject matter under 35 U.S.C. (United States Constitution) §101. 

Therefore the patent writer should be expert in patent application drafting techniques that includes strong patent claims to define the boundary of the invention, details about one or more embodiments, and drawing sections of patent applications.

As discussed earlier, software program is not a tangible object and to make software programs patentable, inventors must propose and create a tangible product which contains the invented software program. For example, when an inventor puts his sensor program, which starts the car engine with one touch finger, into a general purpose computer, this computer is not merely “a general purpose computer” anymore. This is a sensor machine, making it a patentable product even though the sensor software program itself is not patentable.

Best Practices to follow while writing Patent Claims: 

While writing the patent claims use of specialized language expressions provide better protection from patent infringers. For example, when an invention contains a particular component, patent writers need to describe it not as one component but “at least” one component. 

“At least one” refers to “one or more”  components and therefore if a granted patent claims contains ” one ” or “at least one” will make a lot of difference if an infringer infringes upon the patented product. This example illustrates a need for language manipulation in patent claim writing. 

To Read more about writing software based patents: Click here

How to get Patent for my Invention & Idea Globally?

How to patent business technology. Contact our patent experts for reviewing your tech application.

How to Patent an Idea Internationally: Decide whether you need an International Patent for Invention

How to patent guide for startups: Individual inventors and startups who think and dream big often come up with patentable ideas for which they wish to file international patents. The inventive concept has to be protected legally before any other party can copy it. Before beginning the process and steps to file an international patent one should ask the question when is the right time to file or apply for international patent. As a business owner if you are thinking about expanding your business in one or more foreign countries, getting an international patent under Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) system is a good option.

International Patent Attorney

International Patent Registration

Our team of international patent attorneys are based in Asia. We would like to explain with you about international patents & how to patent innovative systems. How do you get worldwide protection for your invention? Many foreign inventors think and have a point of view that filing international patents gives and grants them protection in 140+ countries across the globe. However, this is not TRUE. The advantage of filing international patent for your invention  is entering the member countries of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) system in 30 or 31 months from the first patent filing date in the home country.

How to Patent: Cost for Filing International Patents

The cost of applying international patents will depend on many parameters. The first important consideration is whether the patent applicant is an individual or filing international patent as business entity. The cost and fee structure of PCT before WIPO is almost four times the individual fees for the business entity.

Another very important factor is selection of international searching authority (ISA) by the patent applicant. If you have already filed and applied for patent for your invention in home country you can file a complete patent application with patent claims as international patent before WIPO, Geneva. Filing a PCT patent application will cost approximately $1500-USD 2500 depending upon the patent applicant status and  selection of international searching authority (ISA). The PCT international patent provides the inventor with the legal right to enter international patent application in other countries under national phase for example in India: National Phase Patent Filling in India. So filing international patent in individual capacity can save cost for the international patent application.

Patent Research Attorney for Protecting Business Methods

Business method patent attorney will assist you understand how to protect business method by combining it with software application. A business method patent attorney is a technology lawyer & patent attorney manages the intellectual property practice at the law firm by focusing on strategic patent prosecution, drafting enforceable patent claims, writing local and international patent applications, patent counselling, patent portfolio management, and patent litigation, in the field of computer engineering, communications, and software technologies.

The patent projects begin by conducting patent prior art search, analysing patent eligibility by performing patentability analysis, drafting of the patent application, filing of parent patent application, filing PCT applications under International Phase and National Phase, responding to objections raised by patent offices, conducting patent hearings and drafting legal agreements and contracts in the business industry.

Computer Hardware and Software Inventions

Computer related Inventions (CRIs) Protection by filing Patents

Computer Hardware and Software Inventions can be patented subject to certain conditions. Among all intellectual property (IP) services in India, patent filing in India is most sought after specially in the case of technologies and innovations pertaining to computer hardware, software and other computer related inventions (CRIs). As per Indian Patent Office, patents are filed in India for innovations involving multiple aspects, such as, computers, computer systems, computer networks, computer related inventions (CRIs), computer hardware and software inventions, data processing systems, data processing methods, information technology, database creation, database processing, database management, software, functions, computer programs, firmware, embedded systems, technical effects and technical advancements.

After performing patent search and analyzing patent search results related to computer hardware and software inventions, it can be seen that most patents filed with patent claims defining computer hardware and software inventions can be categorized into method claims or process claims, apparatus or system claims, computer readable medium claims, or patent claims that are drafted to define a computer program product.

Indian Patent Office Procedure

Patent Examination Request in India

After filing a patent in India for computer related inventions (CRIs), computer hardware, and computer software, the provisions of Indian Patents Act requires the patent applicant to file a request for patent examination, following which the patent will be examined by the Indian Patent Office. The request for patent examination in India can be filed via Form 18 under e-filing mode or physical filing mode. The official fee to file Form 18 for patent examination request under patent e-filing mode is INR 4000, INR 10,000 and INR 20,000 for a natural person (individual patent applicant), a small entity and a legal entity respectively. For physical filing mode, official fee to file examination request vide Form 18 with the Indian patent office, the official fee is INR 4400, INR 11,000 and INR 22,000 respectively.

Patent Examination Procedure in India

After filing of patent examination request for patent applications relating to computer hardware, computer software and computer related inventions (CRIs), computer hardware and software inventions, the patent office examines the patent claims for patent eligibility or patentability, including novelty, inventive step (non-obviousness), and industrial application.

Non-Patentable Subject Matter in India

Section 3 of Indian Patents Act

In addition, the patent examiner also examines the patent claims under the subject matter of non-patentable inventions, specifically section 3(k) of the Indian Patents Act, wherein business methods and software per se are not patentable under the Indian patent laws. This implies that source code of software cannot be patented in India, and the patent laws only allow innovations satisfying the criteria of patentability to be registered as patents in India.

Software Patents in India – Best Practices

Software patent attorneys in India having expertise in patent searching, patent drafting and patent filing generally follow best practices for handling computer related patent matters, and computer hardware and software inventions in India. Patent lawyers and patent law firms in India handle all stages of patent process efficiently, including patent filing and registration, PCT National Phase Application Filing, and Patent Prosecution before the Indian patent office.

5 steps to obtain Patent in India for computer hardware and software inventions

The following 5 steps can be followed in India to obtain and register patents in five steps:

  1. Conduct a patent prior art search to see if the invention has potential to withstand the test of patent eligibility.
  2. Draft a strong patent application with comprehensive and enforceable patent claims
  3. File patent application in India, PCT international phase patent application with WIPO and PCT National Phase Application in multiple countries.
  4. Track patent examination process and understand objections raised by the patent examiner while issuing patent examination report, or first examination report (FER).
  5. Respond to objections properly and ensure timely compliance to proceed the patent towards registration stage and obtain patent registration certificate from the Indian patent office.

What is a business method patent?

Role of business method patent attorney

In the recent technology scenario, business method patents is a buzz word. Although, the word “business method patents” is not defined but in normal day use “business method patents” relates to a patent relating to a method of doing business. Examples for  any kind of business method patent will include DATA PROCESSING SYSTEMS OR METHODS, SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR ADMINISTRATIVE, COMMERCIAL, FINANCIAL, MANAGERIAL, SUPERVISORY OR FORECASTING PURPOSES; SYSTEMS OR METHODS SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR ADMINISTRATIVE, COMMERCIAL, FINANCIAL, MANAGERIAL, SUPERVISORY OR FORECASTING PURPOSES, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR.

Business Method Patents: IPC G06Q

Most business method patents fall under IPC Class G06Q. The Patent Offices worldwide use IPC patent classification to classify patents that claim a system or apparatus and corresponding methods for performing data processing operations uniquely designed for processing data between servers, & handheld devices.

IPC G06Q 10/00   Administration; Management

G06Q 20/00    Payment architectures, schemes or protocols (apparatus for performing or posting payment transactions

G06Q 30/00        Commerce, e.g. shopping or e-commerce

G06Q 40/00   Finance; Insurance; Tax strategies; Processing of corporate or income taxes

G06Q 50/00 Systems or methods specially adapted for a specific business sector, e.g. utilities or tourism

G06Q 90/00 Systems or methods specially adapted for administrative, commercial, financial, managerial, supervisory or forecasting purposes, not involving significant data processing

Is Your Business Method Invention Patent Worthy? Ask & consult your business method patent attorney today

Over the years, the Patent Office have made very clear that a business method can be patented if it meets the standard requirements for patentability. The patentee of a business method patent can patent the business method if it is original, useful, and not obvious.

Examples of Business Method Patents drafted by business method patent attorney

Business method patents relates to a way of doing business which generates revenue for the company and at the same time provides user experience via user interface of the handheld device. Some recent examples of business method patents are:

United States Patent 9514462 granted to Google for content purchasing on a computing device. In one implementation, a computer-implemented method includes receiving, at a computing device and from a computer server system, digital content that is for sale and that is received without having yet been purchased by a user of the computing device; storing the digital content locally on the computing device in a manner that prohibits user access to the digital content; after storing the digital content: receiving user input that indicates the user is purchasing at least a portion of the stored digital content; and in response to the received user input, storing information that indicates the user purchased the portion of the digital content and providing the user with access to the purchased portion of the digital content; and in response to detecting that the computing device is communicatively connected to the computer server system over a network, providing the stored information to the computer server system.

United States Patent 8856922 granted to Facebook for management of reports related to imposter accounts in a social network system. In use, imposter account reports received by a social networking system are put into a report management process that routes the reports into other handling processes based upon the comparison of the probability of fraud in an alleged imposter account versus the probability of fraud in an alleged authentic account. The account determined to be most probably fraudulent is enrolled in an account verification process. In the account verification process, the account-holder is asked to verify their identity automatically. If the automatic verification fails to verify the identity of the account-holder, a manual process for verification is initiated.

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Assisting Clients with Complex Patent Issues: Patent Searches, Patent Drafting, Patent Filing, Patent Office Examinations, Patent Prosecution, Patent Due Diligence & Patent Litigation Strategy
 
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Software Patent FAQs:

How to Patent an Idea

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General Patent FAQs:

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Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

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Patent Attorney in New York

Top rated and highly experienced patent lawyers in New York can be found by searching USPTO database or by reviewing patent law firms comprising patent attorneys (patent agents) registered to practice before USPTO. Inventors in New York can personally interview multiple patent lawyers before selecting the patent attorney best suited to address their needs. Clients can also explore cities in the vicinity of New York, including, Brooklyn, Cedarhurst, Elizabeth, Garden City, Flushing, Bronx, Jamaica, Staten Island, Hackensack etc. and can also research patent attorneys practicing related areas, like Intellectual Property, Copyrights, Trademarks, Trade Secrets, Cyber Laws, Technology Laws, and the like.

Technology Development in New York

As it is well known, New York is the financial, business, trademark, and fashion focal point of the world, and hence, many global businesses and financial corporations are headquartered there. New York is a great place to launch innovative products due to the tech savvy residents. Recently, it was reported that a mobile application has been launched to apply for Food Stamps in New York. It is well known that about 1.7 million people in New York City receive food stamps and to qualify, they must produce dozens of documents to prove their eligibility, including birth certificates, pay stubs, leases and children’s school records. It is really problematic to gather, copy and bring the documents to a social services office, and then wait to be seen by a worker. New York city’s welfare agency, the Human Resources Administration, plans to ease this step with the help of a new cellphone app, wherein those seeking food stamps can take pictures of the required documents with their phones and upload the photos to the mobile application.

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications (Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech)

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firms with significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filingspatent services in India and global patent consulting services.

Law office of Rahul Dev is a niche technology and research based law firm focusing on next generation business and legal issues faced in India and outside India during international business and cross-border technology transactions. We assist our clients in close collaboration with our associates and counsels within India and outside by providing custom engagement models to address our client’s needs.

Practice areas include drafting and filing patent applications, patent prior art searches, patent prosecution, patent filing in India, PCT national phase entry in India, PCT international applications with WIPO, freedom to operate searches, patentability analysis and patent strategy to create a valuable patent portfolio.

Patent attorney Rahul Dev works with clients providing expert legal services in the field of innovative pharmaceutical products, branded drugs, generic drugs, molecular biology, immunology, cell biology, regenerative medicine including ESCs, iPSCs, pSCs, diagnostics, therapeutics, theranostics, drug delivery systems, host-vector systems, high throughput screening, bioinformatics, diagnostic imaging, ancillary services (PET, CT, MRI, ultrasound, greenlight, lithotripsy, radiation therapy, cyber-knife, nuclear camera, clinical lab, pathology, physical therapy and dispensing prescriptions).

Patent attorney and technology lawyer Rahul Dev works closely with USPTO licensed patent attorneys to assist clients with patent reexaminations, patent prosecution, drafting USPTO office action responses, patent infringement litigation, patent claim mapping and patent licensing. For international patent filings, we have an established network of global patent attorneys to provide reliable and cost effective services to our clients.

Pharmaceutical patents for inventions resulting from combination of previously known active ingredients face higher level of scrutiny from the patent examiner as patent office does not generally allow the patent owners to extend the life of existing patents by filing new patents for substantially same or similar inventions, without any novelty or inventive step (non-obviousness).

patent attorney in india

Evergreening of Patents

Q. What is evergreening of patents?

Such strategies are commonly followed in pharmaceutical sector for drug patents and hence, patent offices rely on the determination of a new or a non-obvious synergy or a distinct effect. In use, such a novel and non-obvious synergy or the distinct effect has to be covered comprehensively by drafting a strong and focused set of patent claims, which can be further supported by way of accompanying detailed description of the invention including results of clinical (laboratory) and biology test results.

Therefore, while drafting patent applications covering drug patents and pharmaceutical inventions, pharma patent attorneys follow the best practice of writing patent specifications with the required detailed description of the inventions to satisfy the patent eligibility criteria.

Patent Thicket

Q. What is a patent thicket?

Another term related to evergreening of patents is patent thicket, which implies a dense web of overlapping intellectual property rights that a company must hack its way through in order to actually commercialize new technology, in other words, “an overlapping set of patent rights” which requires innovators to reach licensing deals for multiple patents from multiple sources.

Product Hopping

Q. What is product hopping in pharmaceutical sector?

As it is well known, pharmaceutical sector often experiences battle between generic drug makers and multinational pharmaceutical companies, which results in “product-switching” or “product hopping”, whereby brand name pharmaceutical companies make an effort to block generic drug manufacturers, which are their competitors, on a patented drug by making slightly different reformulations that offer little or no therapeutic advantages.

Advocate Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

Quoted in and contributed to 50+ national & international publications (Bloomberg, FirstPost, SwissInfo, Outlook Money, Yahoo News, Times of India, Economic Times, Business Standard, Quartz, Global Legal Post, International Bar Association, LawAsia, BioSpectrum Asia, Digital News Asia, e27, Leaders Speak, Entrepreneur India, VCCircle, AutoTech)

Regularly invited to speak at international & national platforms (conferences, TV channels, seminars, corporate trainings, government workshops) on technology, patents, business strategy, legal developments, leadership & management

Working closely with patent attorneys along with international law firms with significant experience with lawyers in Asia Pacific providing services to clients in US and Europe. Flagship services include international patent and trademark filings, patent services in India and global patent consulting services.

Pharmaceutical Patent Attorney

Law office of Rahul Dev is a niche technology and research based law firm focusing on next generation business and legal issues faced in India and outside India during international business and cross-border technology transactions. We assist our clients in close collaboration with our associates and counsels within India and outside by providing custom engagement models to address our client’s needs.

Practice areas include drafting and filing pharmaceutical and drug patent applications, pharmaceutical and drug patent prior art searches, pharmaceutical and drug patent prosecution, pharmaceutical and drug patent filing in India, pharmaceutical and drug PCT national phase entry in India, pharmaceutical and drug PCT international applications with WIPO, freedom to operate searches for pharmaceutical products and drugs, patentability analysis of pharmaceuticals and drugs and patent strategy to create a valuable patent portfolio comprising of new pharmaceutical and drug.

Pharmaceutical Patent attorney Rahul Dev works with clients providing expert legal services in the field of innovative pharmaceutical products, branded drugs, generic drugs, molecular biology, immunology, cell biology, regenerative medicine including ESCs, iPSCs, pSCs, diagnostics, therapeutics, theranostics, drug delivery systems, host-vector systems, high throughput screening, bioinformatics, diagnostic imaging, ancillary services (PET, CT, MRI, ultrasound, greenlight, lithotripsy, radiation therapy, cyber-knife, nuclear camera, clinical lab, pathology, physical therapy and dispensing prescriptions).

Patent attorney and technology lawyer Rahul Dev works closely with USPTO licensed patent attorneys to assist clients with patent reexaminations, patent prosecution, drafting USPTO office action responses, patent infringement litigation, patent claim mapping and patent licensing. For international patent filings, we have an established network of global patent attorneys to provide reliable and cost effective services to our clients.

Patent Strategy

Innovative intellectual property comprising strong and enforceable patents with well drafted patent claims can be created in a cost-effective manner by engaging with an experienced patent attorney and technology business lawyer. A strongly formulated patent strategy acts as an invaluable asset during technology and product development, as has been proven time and again by innovative companies worldwide.

patent attorney india

ITPAS (Ideas to Patents and Strategy), is an innovative business program to create and bring new products to markets across the globe, as reported by New York Time News. By expediting the process of creating valuable patents, global inventors and innovative business owners can define the title and ownership of creative business models, which can further be patented across multiple jurisdictions (US, Europe, Asia Pacific), subject to the patent eligibility criteria.

Importance of Patents

Historically, patents have added immense value to technology based products, thereby increasing revenues and creating healthy competition in the industry. For example, a new product may be launched with a first-to-market advantage, which can easily be replicated and knocked off the shelves by the competitors. Therefore, without appropriate patent protection, the revenue of original product owner may reduce. On the contrary, by drafting and filing strong patent applications, the original product owner can stop third parties from infringing upon its patents and further exploit licensing revenues from a strong patent portfolio.

Benefits of Patents

Patent laws across multiple jurisdictions include marking requirement in one form or another, which requires the patent applicants and patent owners to mark the product as “Patent Pending” or “Patented”. In case of physical products, patent number or registered design number can be stamped or marked. In essence, such marking requirements provide additional advantages to patent owners as these act as a supplementary marketing tool for the companies.

Software Patent FAQs:

How to Patent an Idea

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r_Vwqg9eShw]

General Patent FAQs:

Journey of my blog from LinkedIn to 30+ news portals

Rahul Dev is a Patent Attorney & International Business Lawyer practicing Technology, Intellectual Property & Corporate Laws. He is reachable at rd (at) patentbusinesslawyer (dot) com & @rdpatentlawyer on Twitter

Flagship Speaking Engagements

Patent Forum (Munich, Germany) | News Channels | Ministry of Corporate Affairs | ASSOCHAM | FICCI | Brand Licensing India | BioEnergy International

Featured Publications

Economic Times | The Hindu | BioSpectrum | International Bar Association | LawAsia | SwissInfo | Global Legal Post | HT Live Mint | Outlook Money

Patent Attorney in New York

Top rated and highly experienced patent lawyers in New York can be found by searching USPTO database or by reviewing patent law firms comprising patent attorneys (patent agents) registered to practice before USPTO. Inventors in New York can personally interview multiple patent lawyers before selecting the patent attorney best suited to address their needs. Clients can also explore cities in the vicinity of New York, including, Brooklyn, Cedarhurst, Elizabeth, Garden City, Flushing, Bronx, Jamaica, Staten Island, Hackensack etc. and can also research patent attorneys practicing related areas, like Intellectual Property, Copyrights, Trademarks, Trade Secrets, Cyber Laws, Technology Laws, and the like.

Technology Development in New York

As it is well known, New York is the financial, business, trademark, and fashion focal point of the world, and hence, many global businesses and financial corporations are headquartered there. New York is a great place to launch innovative products due to the tech savvy residents. Recently, it was reported that a mobile application has been launched to apply for Food Stamps in New York. It is well known that about 1.7 million people in New York City receive food stamps and to qualify, they must produce dozens of documents to prove their eligibility, including birth certificates, pay stubs, leases and children’s school records. It is really problematic to gather, copy and bring the documents to a social services office, and then wait to be seen by a worker. New York city’s welfare agency, the Human Resources Administration, plans to ease this step with the help of a new cellphone app, wherein those seeking food stamps can take pictures of the required documents with their phones and upload the photos to the mobile application.

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