“The scope of improvement is infinite, precisely because perfection is unattainable”.
Often, after filing a patent for an invention, additional modifications and improvement of the invention surface. The improvements or modifications may take place as a result of further experimentation to improve the invention, or as a result of feedback received from the industry.
In such a scenario, where the invention is already protected by a patent, the improvement or modification over the original patented product or process may be protected by a “Patent of Addition” in India.
“Patent of Addition” falls under Sections 54, 55 and 56 of the Patents Act, 1970. A patent of addition facilitates the addition of new subject matter in the form of modifications and improvements to an existing disclosure of the parent application, while retaining the priority date for claims based on the original disclosure by the patentee.
Filing a new patent application is another option, but the priority date of the new patent will be different from that of the previously filed application (or parent application). The claims of the patent of addition inherit the priority date of the parent application. As a result, claims in the patent of addition can have a priority date that is before the filing of the patent of addition.
However, the applicant must be the same for the parent patent application and the patent of addition. If the improvement or modification involves an additional applicant, a patent of addition may not be pursued.
A patent of addition effectively enables an applicant to make incremental improvements and add embodiments that might not justify their own patent applications without needing to file parallel applications. More specifically, the applicant need not pay a renewal fee for a patent of addition, thereby saving costs.
A patent of addition is a suitable and attractive option for applicants to add additional features onto previously filed patent applications, it may not always be the right tool for the job, it has its own disadvantages.
In contrast to the perception that the patent of addition inherits the priority date of a parent application, certain claims may have their own priority dates. Only the claims fully supported by the disclosure of the parent patent application are entitled to the priority date of the parent patent application.
A term of a patent is 20 years from the date of filing of patent application and the term of patent of addition is limited to its parent application’s term. For example, a patent of addition filed in 2017 that claims priority to a parent application filed in 2013 will expire in 2033, as opposed to 2037 if a new patent application was filed instead of patent of addition application. This reduced patent tenure might result in loss of significant revenue from products or methods that pertains to the new patent claims supported by the patent of addition.
Further, introduction of new claims in the patent of addition may leave the door open for an opponent to assert the invalidity of parent application if the disclosure in the parent application do not justify the additional claims. In situations where support for the new subject matter of the patent of addition is not clearly set out in the parent application, it may be advantageous to file a separate application to utilise the distinctiveness of the new claims, and to obtain the benefit of a full patent term.
Accordingly, a patent applicant must look at all the pros and cons before making a decision to apply for a patent of addition.
Since the inception of human civilization, there is a need to design and manufacture everything from small individual parts and devices to big systems. Man, in the course of his progress and civilization has learnt to develop various tools, machines, equipments and appliances and it is hard to imagine this world without any mechanical appliancetoday. In fact we need them at every step and stage for any physical activity for leisure or work in the house, office or outdoor. Having said that mechanical engineering sector has evolved by leap and bounds over the years.
Affordable Innovation at cost effective rate for the benefit of the mankind is the need of the hour
Mechanical engineering is one of the diverse field of engineering that focuses on the design, analysis, materials and manufacture of systems and deals with producing myriads of products of our daily needs. The enormity of the products range from household products like washing machine, vacuum cleaner, sewing machine, etc to whole range of heavy engineering items and industrial machinery like cranes, construction and mining equipment.
Mechanical Engineering is at the core of creativity and enterprise of human. Invention of a new mechanical device require a great deal of work and drive to attain success. When a new mechanical device is invented, its inventor must seek a patent in order to avail exclusive rights to the device.
A patent is a type of intellectual property right that is granted to the original inventor/creator of an invention by the Patent Office or the Intellectual Property Office of the respective country. A patent grants the patent holder exclusive rights or monopoly over the invention, meaning that it is forbidden for another person or party to manufacture, distribute, sell, or import the invention without authorization.
Apart from providing monopoly to the patentee, the patent literature is essential and rich source of technical information available worldwide. Anyone can refer to the patent databases to understand what is going on in a particular area of science and technology.
The growth of the world economy and the progressing globalization lead to a rapidly expanding access to information and new markets for inventors, resulting in greater international competition and new forms of organization. As a result of technological advances and the increased flow of information, knowledge is increasingly viewed as the driving force of economic growth and innovation (OECD/Eurostat 2005).
Many Multi-National engineering companies which grew with mechanical inventions are now well known globally because of their inventory of thousands of patents to support their businesses.
Directory of American Tools and Machinery Patents (DATAMP) is a database comprising patents of old machines and tools. DATAMP is non-profit volunteer endeavor supported by users having an inventory of thousands plus (and growing further) patents collected largely from the databases of USPTO and augmented with several other patents from other databases, i.e., from Canada, Switzerland, Germany and UK.
It is intended at creating a clearinghouse for information on antique tool and wood working machine patents allowing collectors of these tools to easily find information about the history of tools and trades.There is constant increase in the number of mechanical patents filed in India in the last few years.
India as a developing and upcoming nation should really look into this trend of patent filing for growth of India’s economy.In order to get a patent, the inventor has to reduce the invention to practice and must provide all the necessary information to enable an individual skilled in the field of mechanical engineering to create and use the invention.How do you get a patent on an idea? Can you get a patent on a business model?
Patent Filing in Mechanical Engineering Sector Services:
We at Tech Corp International Strategist (TCIS, India) can help you file a patent for your tool, machine, equipment or appliance. In the patent system you explain how to make and use your invention, in exchange for being able to prevent others from making or selling similar devices for a limited period of time.
But how should you disclose your invention to the public in your patent filing that it gives you an extra edge towards your competitors?? We can help you determine what elements of your invention are actually patentable. To make this determination, we create a patentability opinion. This is done by performing a prior art search, in which we analyse the patent and non-patent literature in the public domain about potentially similar inventions. Based on that comparison, we identify features that have not yet been claimed by other inventors, and determine which of those are most likely to be patentable.