IPO proposes Rule changes in Patent Act
The Indian Patent Office has released draft amendment rules on December 4th 2018. The majority changes are in view of expediting examination of the applications and the provision of having the bench of controller/s for deciding pre-grant opposition matters in contrast to the single controller as per the existing practice.
With respect to expediting the prosecution of the patent applications according to the current practice, the examination can be expedited only if the applicant was a start-up company or India has been indicated as the competent International Searching Authority or elected as an International Preliminary Examining Authority in the corresponding international application.
However, according to proposed rules, more patent applicant/s will be able to request for expedited examination. The provision can now be availed by the female applicant/s, Government undertaking organizations and if the applicant is eligible under agreement between Indian Patent Office with another participating patent office. This is relevant in terms of recent update on Japan-India Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) pilot program which is to be started in the year 2019.
The full copy of patent rules can be viewed from here.
The rules are open for any comments/suggestions, which are to be sent to Shri Sushil K Satpute, Director, DIPP, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India either by post or through e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.