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What are the benefits of applying for a patent through the PCT?

Written by Jane Coyle on 19 July 2009

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An applicant has up to 18 months more than in a procedure outside the PCT to reflect on the desirability of seeking protection in foreign countries. An applicant has:

to appoint local patent agents in each foreign country;

to prepare the necessary translations and to pay the national fees;

if an international application is in the form prescribed by the PCT, it cannot be rejected on formal grounds by any designated Office during the national phase of the processing of the application.

on the basis of the international search report or the written opinion, it can be evaluated with reasonable; probability the chances of the invention being patented;

the applicant has the possibility during the international preliminary examination to amend the international application to put it in order before processing by the designated offices;

the search and examination work of patent offices can be considerably reduced or virtually eliminated thanks to the international search report, the written opinion and, where applicable, the international preliminary examination report that accompany the international application;

each international application is published together with an international search report third parties are therefore in a better position to formulate a well founded opinion about the patentability of the claimed invention.

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