A patent is a right granted to the inventor for a device, substance, method or process that is new when compared with what is already known. A patent protects new inventions and covers how things work, what they do, how they do it, what they are made of and how they are made. It gives the owner the right to prevent others from making, using, importing or selling the invention without permission. Patents are often granted for small, incremental improvements to a known technology. A patent is legally enforceable. It gives the inventor exclusive right to commercially exploit her / his invention for the life of the patent.
A patent lasts for a set period of time, to exclusively make, use or sell, any device, substance, method or process, which is new, inventive and useful. A patent application is a descriptive document (often including diagrams) that contains concise written statements that define the invention covered by the patent application.
Most would argue that patent protection fosters technological, economic and social advancement.
According to the UK Intellectual Property Office, for an inventor to be granted a patent ...
the invention, must:
the invention must not be:
Read IP Australia's "Choosing the right IP" for a patent overview.
Types of patents and their time limits
Inventors are required to pay annual maintenance fees on their patent/patent application.
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