What countries does a Patent Pending Number cover?

What is a Patent Pending Number?

After coming up with an invention, the first step is to conduct a search to check whether it is “new” worldwide. Next, you should get a Patent Pending Number by filing a provisional patent application. When filing a provisional patent application, you are only required to submit a document that “fully describes” your invention – there are no other legal requirements.

Within a business day of filing a provisional patent application, you will receive a Patent Pending Number, and all your subsequent patents will take the date of this provisional patent application. After getting a Patent Pending Number, you may freely:

  • disclose your invention to product designers, engineers, potential licensees and companies that may wish to buy your patent;
  • conduct market research;
  • publish your invention on a website;
  • appoint a manufacturer;
  • sell your new product;
  • sell / license your invention / patent; and
  • mark your product worldwide “Patent Pending”.

Tip: before filing a provisional patent application, ensure that all your disclosures are made under a confidentiality agreement. A watertight, free NDA is available at SuperNDA.

By marking your product “Patent Pending”, you will:

  • communicate clearly to competitors that they should not copy your product; and
  • communicate to your customers that your product is unique, innovative, technological and new.

Should someone copy your invention during the 12 month provisional patent period, you may file complete patents in the countries in which the infringer is making, importing, selling, advertising or using your product and, after prosecuting these complete patents to grant, interdict / prevent him from continuing to infringe your patents … for the next 20 years.

Basically, the Patent Pending Number reserves your right to file complete patents (that claim the date of your Patent Pending Number) in 177 countries for 12 months. This 12 month period can be extended to 30 months by filing a PCT / International Patent Application before expiry of this 12 month period.

During the 12 month period, you may develop your invention further. And, all improvements may be included in the complete patent.

Getting a Patent Pending Number is quick, easy and very affordable – most inventors apply for it themselves and only engage the services of a patent attorney when preparing the complete patent application in 12 months’ time.

Anyone, no matter in which country you live, may get a Patent Pending Number for only US$99 using the Iptica online Patent Pending Number system. The Iptica system is safe – Iptica signs a confidentiality undertaking; Iptica does not store any application documents; Iptica’s websites are SSL Secure; Iptica’s communications are encrypted; and patent applications are submitted directly to an official Patent Office that is legally obliged to maintain the application secret. To file a Patent Pending Number application takes only a few minutes, and all forms can be signed electronically.

After paying $99 for the Patent Pending Number, you will incur no further patent costs for the next year.

What rights does a Patent Pending Number provide?

A Patent Pending Number warns potential competitors not to copy your product worldwide. Your potential patent rights are the broadest during the 12 month period following issuance of your Patent Pending Number, as the Patent Pending Number reserves your right to file patents in all 177 member countries of the Paris Convention.

Apart from its deterrence value, the Patent Pending Number also provides great marketing potential – communicating to potential customers that your product is novel and inventive. This is how Pantene got to become the World’s #1 selling shampoo!

You may also license or sell a Patent Pending Number. In fact, licensees / buyers would prefer to transact with you at this stage, as they will then be able to: influence how the complete patent is drafted; and select the countries in which patent protection is secured.

Where can I get a Patent Pending Number?

You can get a Patent Pending Number by:

  • asking a patent attorney to draft and file a provisional patent application. Our cost to do this is R6,950 plus vat;
  • preparing your own document that “fully described” your invention, completing the patent application forms, opening an account with your Patent Office, and filing the provisional patent application with your Patent Office. Iptica has identified the world’s lowest-cost Patent Office with an efficient electronic patent filing system. That is why Iptica can file provisional patents at a cost lower than the filing fee charged by 99% of Patent Offices worldwide; or
  • completing the simple Iptica online Patent Pending Number application form – see a sample form:

Worldwide, most provisional patent applications are filed by inventors directly. Patent attorneys are typically engaged to draft and file the complete patent in 12 months’ time.

As long as your provisional patent application is filed in the official Patent Office of a member country of the Paris Convention, you will enjoy “patent pending” rights in all 177 other member countries. This means that a UK resident may get a Patent Pending Number by filing a provisional patent in South Africa and, in a year’s time, file corresponding complete patents worldwide claiming the date (referred to as the “priority date“) of the South African provisional patent application. To reserve patent rights worldwide, UK residents do not need to file the provisional patent application in the UK.

Countries covered by a Patent Pending Number

Iptica’s Patent Pending Number reserves your right to file patents in the following countries for 12 months:

Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican, Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Estonia, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea‐Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Holy See, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea (i.e. South Korea), Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San, Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Sierra, Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Syrian Arab Republic, Tajikistan, Thailand, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and, Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United Republic of Tanzania, United States of America, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

And, a provisional patent application filed in any one of these countries can be used to claim priority in all the other countries.

Note: The Iptica system also alerts applicants where local patent laws impose additional requirements / restrictions upon filing provisional patents.

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