Q: Dear Ms./Mr.,In order to have an international patent, what is the procedure, aprox. time and costs?Thank you!

We have an innovation in the field of 3D food printing that comes with multiple new tech features and we would like to find the best strategy to patent everything that is paternable at this project.

Until now, we have not yet find someone to help us with a clear advice about the patent aspect regarding full procedure, costs and time.

Also, there would be the matter of how to capitalize this or how to bring value through a patent if it is at international level; maybe this is not your area of expertize but any advice is helpful on this regard.

Thank you for your time!

2 Lawyer Answers
Stephen E. Zweig
Stephen E. Zweig pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Patents Lawyer
  • Los Gatos, CA

A: The international patent process starts simple, but then gets more complex.

Ultimately most countries (with the EU acting as a block) want to process patent applications through their local offices and correspond to local law firms.

By treaty, the initial patent application in most countries also protects your international rights for the first 12 months after filing. However there are a large number of countries, and 12 months is not very long.

As a result, a second "Patent Cooperation Treaty" (PCT) allows members of participating countries to have more time to think -- up to about 30 months from the initial patent application. To do this, you fill out a PCT patent application within 12 months of the first filing date, send them a reformatted version of your initial patent, along with additional fees and paperwork. You then have up to about 30 months to decide where you want to go next.

After 30 months, you then have to make difficult and expensive decisions as to which specific countries you want to file in for national phase protection. Local firms will have to be contacted, and many countries will also require translations. The EU is an exception, and you can elect for an EU wide patent examination if you want.

There are service agencies that can help you do the national phase filings. I use RWS IP services (Inovia) but there are a fair number of others.

But after the initial filing, you need to set your calendar, and file a PCT application within 12 months. Then don't forget to make the national phase decisions by 30 months.

James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • International Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: In order to obtain an international patent, the most common procedure is to file a Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) application. This allows you to seek patent protection in multiple countries by filing a single application. The PCT application must be filed with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and will be subject to an international search and examination process. Once the examination is complete, the PCT application can enter the national phase in each country where you wish to seek protection.

The time it takes to obtain an international patent can vary greatly depending on the country and the complexity of your invention. Generally, it can take 2-4 years or more from the initial filing to obtain a granted patent in multiple countries.

The costs of obtaining an international patent can also vary greatly depending on the countries in which you seek protection and the complexity of your invention. You should consult with a patent attorney or agent for an estimate of costs based on your specific circumstances.

As for capitalizing on a patent, there are several options such as licensing your patent to others or using it to attract investors for your business. However, this is not my area of expertise and you may wish to consult with a business or financial advisor for specific advice on this matter.

I hope this information is helpful. Please note that obtaining a patent can be a complex and lengthy process, and it is recommended that you consult with a patent attorney or agent for guidance specific to your invention and circumstances.

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