The PCT was concluded in 1970, amended in 1979, and
modified in 1984 and 2001.A patent is an exclusive right granted for an invention, which is a product or a process that provides, in general, a new way of doing something, or offers a new technical solution to a problem.
any resident or national of a Contracting State of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) may file an
International Application under the PCT.
A single International
Patent application has the same effect as national applications filed in each designated Contracting State of the PCT. However, under the PCT system, in order to obtain patent protection in the designated States, a patent shall be granted by each designated State to the claimed invention contained in the
Procedural and substantive requirements for the grant of patents as well as the amount of fees required are different from one country/region to the other. It is therefore recommend that
an applicant should consult a practicing attorney or agent who is specialized in
Intellectual Property or the Intellectual Property offices of those countries in which you are interested to get protection.
The procedure under the PCT has great advantages for the applicant, the patent offices and the general public:
(i) the applicant has up to 18 months more than he has in a procedure outside the PCT to reflect on the desirability of seeking protection in foreign countries, to appoint local patent agents in each foreign country, to prepare the necessary translations and to pay the national fees; he is assured that, if his 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, he can evaluate with reasonable probability the chances of his invention being patented; and 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;
(ii) 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;
(iii) since each international application is published together with an international search report, third parties are in a better position to formulate a well-founded opinion about the patentability of the claimed invention.