Inventions can be protected from imitation by filing a patent application and by receiving a grant for this patent. A previous publication of the invention is contrary to novelty and must not take place before the application is filed at the German Patent and Trademark Office (Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt) as this may complicate or even prevent the grant of the patent.
It is not possible to add new information to a patent application that has already been filed. This is why all relevant information must be taken into account when elaborating an application.
During the first year it is possible to expand the patent application territorially or to a certain extent with regard to contents by filing an international, European or national application. It is possible to make some alterations to your patent application for which priority is claimed so that publications made during the first year will remain unnoticed.
After the filing of an application, an administrative proceeding will be instigated. During this procedure the formal requirements as well as the protectability of the application will be examined provided that the applicant has filed a request of examination within seven years from the date of filing of the application. After a positive result of the examination report the patent will be granted.
If you wish to take steps against an infringement of your patent already before the patent grant, we may split off a utility model application from your patent application. A utility model is generally registered within less than six months as it is not examined with regards to its content so that it can be filed much faster than a patent. Nevertheless, the holder of a utility model has similar rights as the holder of a patent.
The duration of protection of a patent is 20 years from filing date. At the end of the third year from the filing date maintenance fees have to be paid to the Patent and Trademark Office (Deutsches Patent- und Markenamt) within a prescribed period and regardless the status of the examination procedure of the patent.
We have many years of experience in patent application procedures. We support you not only in the initial phase of your patent application but also throughout the whole examination procedure and we will be at your disposal even after your patent was granted. With your help, we will draft an application that will meet your requirements and that fulfills all the formal guidelines needed for filing your patent at the Patent Office of your choice. Of course, our attorneys are accredited before the German Patent and Trademark Office and before the European Patent Office. Moreover, we support you in all application procedures abroad thanks to our global network of communicating lawyers.