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Supplementary Protection Certificates: application and duration

Written by Paul Bicknell on 09 August 2009

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This article will provide the details which relate to the application process of a SPC.

From 17 December 2007 all SPC application is completed through the national patent office. It is important to note that you will have six months in which to apply for a SPC from the date on which the applicant has received authorisation that they can market their medicinal or plant protection product and the patent must be in force.

It should be noted that the SPC will not be available where it goes beyond the protection available through the patent: Takeda Chemical [2003] EWCA 649­.

The duration of the SPC depends on the length of time that it took to obtain regulatory approval however, the maximum period of protection that is afforded to a SPC is five years.

How to calculate duration:

The formula for granting protection is the difference between the date of the application of the patent and the date of the grant for first authorisation minus five years.

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