IP NEWS

A new route to the Patent Prosecution Highway: U.S. PCT applications

14/06/2013

Patent applicants from the United States have a new route to the patent prosecution highway in Canada. The Canadian patent office (CIPO) recently introduced a Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) pilot project, which allows applicants to expedite and simplify Canadian prosecution based on a corresponding U.S. Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) application. This supplements an existing PPH provision which provides a similar pathway to the PPH from a Canadian PCT application.

To qualify, the PCT application must have designated the USPTO as the International Searching Authority (ISA) and/or the International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA) and must have entered the national phase in Canada on or after January 31, 2013. All claims in the Canadian patent application must sufficiently correspond to one or more claims that were searched and/or examined and received favourable results in the international phase in which the USPTO acted as the ISA or IPEA.

With this pathway, an applicant may use favourable results from the corresponding U.S. PCT application to expedite the Canadian application. It is expected that prosecution of such applications will also be simplified.

The pilot will last two years, subject to extension. No additional government fee is required to request prosecution under any PPH agreement in Canada.

This article is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal or professional advice.

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