Extending a patent abroad
A patent is a national title of which the effects are limited for 20 years, on the territory of the country in which it is granted. Once the initial patent application has been filed in a country, you benefit from a twelve-month priority period to protect your invention abroad, by benefiting from the filing date of the initial application. Several channels for extension can be considered:
The national channel: registration with the Trademark Offices of the countries for which protection is sought. Each procedure is subject to the national law in effect, in the country in question, and results in the granting of a national patent that protects you only on the territory of the country in question.
The European regional channel: registration with the European Patent Office (EPO). A single European procedure makes it possible to obtain the granting of a patent that can produce its effects in more than 30 countries. In each of the countries chosen for which the European patent has been granted, the holder benefits from the same rights that would be conferred to the holder by a national patent granted in this country.
The PCT international channel: through a single filing, you can protect your invention temporarily in over 140 countries. The procedure unfolds in two steps: an international filing phase and a phase of granting several regional or national A patents after the international phase (30 months starting from the date of priority), you choose the countries, or groups of countries, in which you wish to obtain protection. Filing an application for a PCT patent makes it possible to reduce expenses and to spread out the fees for obtaining patents abroad over time.