National phase patent entry

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National phase patent applications – where to file? This is a dilemma faced by applicants during the PCT national phase entry, 30 months after the priority date of the PCT patent application.

Firstly, you must decide whether to focus on countries of manufacture or countries of sale. Typically, it is best to focus national phase patent applications on countries of sale – you can corner 80% of the potential market by filing a handful of patents and spending about US$25,000. Early on, we must accept that certain territories will remain unprotected, but their low volumes will keep your major potential competitors at bay.

Next, pick some “low hanging fruit” – territories where you receive the most “bang for your buck”. Identify a country in each continent that does not examine national phase patent applications … where the grant of your national phase patent is guaranteed without incurring “prosecution costs”. A good example of such a country is South Africa. To file a South African national phase patent costs US$585, and 8 months later it will be granted without additional payment. Also, South African renewals are extremely affordable – renewals for all 20 years can be paid upon grant for only US$785. In other words, US$1,370 will guarantee you 20 years of patent rights in South Africa.

Tip: The most affordable South African national phase patent filing ($399) is offered by GlobalIPCo (for whom we are the exclusive South African agent).

Don’t make the mistake of budgeting only for filing costs. Bear in mind that most countries examine national phase patent applications and the cost to prosecute these applications to grant typically costs one to three times the filing fee, payable over a period of 2-3 years from filing. Thereafter, don’t forget to budget for annual national phase patent renewals using our renewal cost table.

To summarize: blend a handful of “countries of sale” with some “low hanging fruit” for an affordable basket of national phase patents.

SA National phase patents for foreigners:
Brevet sud-africain
Südafrikanisches Patent
Brevetto Sudafricano
Patentes na África do Sul
Патент ЮАР
Patente sudafricana
南アフリカ共和国特許
Chinese South African patent
Israel South African patent

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