UK Patent Applications
For UK inventors normally the first application filed is at the UK Intellectual Property Office, the Government body that deals with UK patent applications.
The main initial cost arises from the patent attorney’s time spent writing the application, thus the cost depends upon the complexity of the invention, but is typically in the range of £500 to £3000+VAT.
Filing a first application for an invention generates a ‘priority date’ (i.e. the date of first-filing) and provided that applications for overseas protection are filed within 12 months of the priority date then the overseas applications can be backdated to the priority date. Thus, a first filing in the UK can notionally protect you worldwide for 12 months.
The UKIPO has a target of granting or refusing patent applications within four and a half years from filing. However, owing to a large backlog of applications this target is often not being met, with many applications remaining pending for longer.
This is particularly the case when examination is not requested on filing. Indeed, if examination is not requested on filing then the examination report will currently not be issued for around 4 to 5 years from filing.
For more information on the different filing options and on UK patent procedure please visit the following pages:
Contact us for a free consultation or for more information on UK patent applications.