How much does a PCT patent cost?

The cost of a PCT / international patent depends on various factors, including:

  • the patent law firm you engage to: (i) draft the PCT patent specification; and (ii) file the PCT patent;
  • the status of the patent applicant – natural persons that are nationals and citizens of select countries qualify for significant discounts;
  • the search authority selected to search and examine the PCT patent – only a few offices extend discounts;
  • the number of independent claims in the PCT patent – we suggest limiting the number of PCT patent claims to one independent claim. This will also save you money during the national phase; and
  • the number of pages of the PCT patent – try to limit the length of the patent specification to 20 pages.

Tip: if the inventor is a South African national and resident, file the PCT patent in the inventor’s name, as this will reduce your PCT filing fee by more than R25,000! However, if you are a company, check if you qualify as a US micro-entity, as this will otherwise be the cheapest option for you.

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