Five FAQs on patents


What is a patent?

If you have created a new invention and want to stop other people from copying your work, you can protect your invention with a patent. A patent gives you the exclusive rights to exploit your invention for up to 20 years. There are special patent law solicitors that can help you register your new patent with the Intellectual Property Office.

Is a patent also considered intellectual property by the law?

Yes, as the invention you have created could form the basis of a new industry or business. Intellectual property (IP) law can be highly complex in some areas. Patents are one of these areas. It’s always a good idea to use an intellectual property solicitor, as they can assess your patent and advise you on whether you could obtain a patent and therefore gain protection under IP law.

Does my patent give my invention protection across the world?

Unfortunately, registering a patent in the UK only gives your invention protection in the UK. If you intend to sell products based on your invention in any other parts of the world, you would have to make separate patent registrations in these countries. Your IP solicitor can advise you on the cost and procedures you would have to go through.

How does the law protect me from patent infringement?

Like all other forms of IP, the patent you have been granted is protected from infringement by unauthorised parties. Your solicitor should initially contact any company that you believe is infringing your patent. If this does not work, your solicitor can begin formal legal proceedings.

What support can a specialist patents solicitor give me?

The patents registration process in the UK can be long and complex. Your patents solicitor can assess your invention and help you initially decide whether a patent is necessary or would be granted. A patent solicitor does, though, become vitally important if you sue for patent infringement. Your solicitor can represent you when you case comes before the court.

If you would like to obtain legal advice on patents, Contact Law can put you in touch with a local intellectual property solicitor free of charge. So, if you have any questions or would like our help in finding local intellectual property solicitors please call us on 0800 1777 162 or complete the web-form above.

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