“Others have seen what is and asked why. I have seen what is not asked why not” – Pablo Picasso
In South Africa
We can assist with the following aspects related to patents:
- Novelty/Patentability searches
- Drafting and filing new patent applications in South Africa and elsewhere in Africa
- Prosecution and registration of new patent applications in South Africa and any other country in the world
- Filing of foreign patent applications including International (PCT) Patent Applications
- Amendments to existing patents/patent applications
- Assignment of patent rights
- Maintenance and renewal of existing patent rights
- Litigation and enforcement of patent rights.
Firstly, it is important to note that patents are territorial by their nature and need to be obtained for each country/territory where the invention is sought to be exploited.
In order to be patentable in South Africa an invention or new technological development needs to meet certain criteria. Certain types of inventions are also excluded from patent protection.
It is important to note that the South African Patent Office will not examine a patent application with regard to this criteria and a patent will be granted when all of the formal requirements have been met. The patent may subsequently be attacked in a court of law (by, for example, a competitor) in terms an allegation that the patent does not meet the patentability requirements.
The Patents Act of 1978 dictates that in order to be patentable an invention should meet the following criteria:
- Novel (New)
- Capable of industrial application
- Not part of one of the excluded grounds
For urgent convention patent filings, the following details must be provided:
- Full names and official address of the applicant(s)
- Full names and residential address of each inventor
- Title of the invention
- Priority application number, date and country
On the basis of these details a valid filing date can be secured. The specification, claims and drawings have to be filed within 14 days from the date of filing of the application.
In the rest of Africa
We have developed relationships with local agents in most African countries. As a result, we are well placed to assist our client’s in protecting their patents in Africa.
In the rest of the world
We have secured patents for our clients in various countries around the world, with the assistance of our foreign agents, with whom we have a long standing working relationship.