Important patent legislation changes in Australia effective 15 April 2013

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The Australian Parliament recently passed the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (“Raising the Bar”) Act 2012 (“the Act”), which received Royal Assent on 15 April 2012.  The Patent legislation changes will come into effect on 15 April 2013.  The changes will implement stricter patentability and specification requirements for patent applications. Which applications are affected? The legislation …

Why do you need an intellectual property attorney?

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Proper preparation of a patent specification is probably the most important part of any patent application process. The patent specification must not only meet certain substantive requirements such as fully describing the invention but also certain formal requirements including those relating to the format of the specification, the required sections, number of claims and so …

Patent attorneys’ new uses for innovation patents

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From 1994 to 2000, Dr John Baxter was a Member of the Advisory Council on Industrial Property (ACIP) for IP Australia. ACIP played a key role in the development of the Australian Innovation Patent system which was launched in 2001. Up to this stage there was no “second tier” patent system available to inventors, particularly …

Refund of Standard Patent Examination Fees

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Under the Australian Patents Act, fees are payable for filing a request for examination. However, in view of the recent global financial crisis and of the large number of patent applications being abandoned after a request for examination has been filed, IP Australia is now prepared to exempt the whole of the examination fee for …

Obtaining international IP protection

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An Australian provisional patent application lodged at IP Australia (IPA) is usually the first step in obtaining one or more patents anywhere in the world. The date on which a provisional patent application is received by the IPA is known as its “priority date”. To obtain patent protection in specific countries of interest, it is …

“Prior Use” in Australia

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Sect. 119 of the Australian Patents Act 1990 (Cth) (the “Patents Act”) provides a ‘prior use’ defence to patent infringement (for patents granted on applications filed on or after 28 September 2006), which allows a third party who was utilizing the patented product or process before the priority date of a claim to continue using …

“Secret Use” in Australia

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In essence, “secret use” offends the principle that a patent monopoly is granted in return for disclosure of the invention. A period of secret use prior to the patent’s monopoly period commencing would give the patentee an effective monopoly period longer than that allowed under the Australian Patents Act 1990 (Cth) (“the Patents Act”) by …

Accelerating the green machine

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The world has been attempting to find ways to become greener in recent decades, and this is now being reflected in a surge in the popularity of green patents. Patent offices throughout the world, including the Australian Patent Office (IP Australia), have begun to examine the role of patents in the development and transfer of …