A patent application is a techno-legal document which provides complete details of the patentable invention. To obtain an exclusive ownership for an invention, it is important for the applicant to know about the methods of filing a Patent or approaches available to secure his/her rights in one or more countries.
An applicant can make a strategy for filing a patent application based on the objective of the business, market situation and economic factors.
Below are the different types of patent applications can be filed in India :
1. Ordinary Application
2. Convention Application
3. PCT International Application
4. PCT National Phase Application
5. Application for Patent of Addition
6. Divisional Application
1. Ordinary Application :
An ordinary application for a patent can file in a patent office, without claiming any priority made in a convention country or without any other reference to an application.
An ordinary application can be approached by two ways or only one way i.e. by filling provisional application or complete specification.
A). A provisional application
A provisional application is a non-final or preliminary application that can be filed to claim priority. As India follows “first to file system” then it is necessary to secure the invention from becoming a prior art of the invention.
It is also important that provisional application must be followed by complete specification within twelve months from the date of filing of a provisional application.
B). Complete Specification
Complete Specification can be file directly or after the filing of a provisional application within 12 months from the date of filing of a provisional application.
2. Convention Application :
If the request for a patent is claiming the priority date of the same or a large extent similar patent application filed in one or more of the Convention countries, then it is called Convention application.
To claim convention status, an applicant has to file the application within twelve months from the basic application in Indian Patent Office (IPO).
3. PCT International Application :
PCT stands for Patent Cooperation Treaty which is an international patent law treaty that provides a unified patent application filing platform that protects the invention in all contracting states.
Under PCT filing an applicant can file a single international application for a patent in a receiving office to seek protection at the same time in all the contracting member countries.
It takes approximately 31 months for the applicant to enter into various countries from the date of filing of PCT application.
4. PCT National Phase Application :
PCT National Phase Application must follow International Application. A PCT National Phase Application has to file in each designating country where applicant sought for protection within 31 months.
5. Application for Patent of Addition :
An applicant can file a patent of addition for the improvement or modification of the invention for which he has already applied or has a granted patent. No need to pay the extra renewal fee for the patent of addition. It expires along with the main patent. Also, it will not be granted before the grant of a patent for the main invention.
6. Divisional Application :
When an application is made for more than one invention, then an applicant can divide the application at any time before the grant of a patent and can file a further application(s) for the invention(s) already applied.