NATIONAL INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OFFICE OF SRI- LANKA
  PATENTS


| Why Patents? | What is a Patent? | What is an invention? | What can be patented? | How a patent is granted? | |Preparation of the application | Renewal |How to protect inventions abroad|

 

 

Why Patents?

Patents protect inventions and ensure the inventors the benefits resulting from the inventions thereby providing incentives for creativity, encouraging further inventions and promoting investment. This will spur the economic and technological development. Patent documents describe newly invented technologies and are available for anyone to refer to. They contain vital information for researchers, inventors and enterprises etc. who want to keep up with new developments, carry out R&D activities and use new technologies.

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What is a Patent?

The State grants the inventor, by means of a patent, the right to exclude others from making, using and selling the qualified invention for a period of 20 years from the date of application for patent. The owner of the patent can use, sell or license the patented technology and derive financial benefits.

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What is an invention?

An Invention is a practical solution to a problem in technology. An invention may relate to a product or a process.

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What can be patented?

an invention is patentable if it (a) is new ( not known in the body of existing knowledge) (b) industrially applicable ( functional and operative) and (c) involves an inventive step ( the development or improvement is not obvious to a person of average skill in the particular field. ) A patent may be granted to an improvement of a valid patented invention but if you use it sometimes you may infringe the rights of the owner of the first patent. Solve this problem by negotiation with the owner.

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How a patent is granted?

Make an application to the Intellectual Property Office using the prescribed form P1( see the regulations). You have to submit a document with the application form describing your invention clearly and completely and the claims. Pay the prescribed fee. ( refer to the regulations for fees). You must submit a search report prepared by an international searching authority or alternatively request the IP Office to forward your invention to a local examiner for search and report.

The IP Office will examine your application as to the formal requirements. If formal requirements are fulfilled and the international type search report is available the patent will be granted. The invention will be published before grant if an international type search report is not available.
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Preparation of the application

Instructions for Applicants :- [ENGLISH] | [SINHALA] | [TAMIL]

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Renewal

A patent is valid for 20 years from the date of application. The patent must be renewed annually from the expiration of the second year from the date of grant paying a fee ( refer to the regulations).

What is not patented: Such things as (i) discoveries, scientific theories and mathematical methods; (ii) plants, animals micro organisms other than transgenic micro organisms and an essentially biological process for the production of plants and animals other than non biological and micro-biological processes; (iii) schemes, rules or methods for doing business, performing purely mental acts or playing games (iv) methods for treatment of human or animal body by surgery or therapy and diagnostic methods practiced on human or animal body (v) inventions which are necessary to protect public order, morality including human animal or plant life, health, or to avoid serious prejudice to environment.

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How to protect inventions abroad

A patent is valid only in the country where it is granted. As Sri Lanka is a member of the Paris Convention for the protection of industrial property, Sri Lankans can obtain patents for their inventions in all the member countries of the Paris Convention under the national law of the particular country.. Almost all the countries are members of this convention. You also can claim priority under the Paris Convention for the protection of Industrial Property in its member countries. Under priority you can claim the date of application of the national application in other member countries. ( within 1 year from the date of application in Sri Lanka)

Alternatively, all Sri Lankan nationals or residents can apply under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) administered by World Intellectual Property organization (WIPO) in Geneva. You may apply for a patent in many countries (Member Countries of PCT) through a single application made to WIPO . This is a simpler procedure than making several applications in several countries. Such application has the same effect as national applications filed in the designated countries (For details see www.wipo.int).

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NATIONAL INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OFFICE OF SRI- LANKA