Record number of International patent filings

April 26, 2013

Continued growth in the number of PCT international patent applications filed in 2012 has lead to a new record number of PCT applications filed in one year  194,500 PCT filings.

Recent provisional figures released from WIPO, the organisational body which oversees Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) international applications, has revealed continuing growth in the number of PCT international patent application filings. A new record for the number of PCT application filings in one year has been set - approximately 194,500 – which represents an increase of over 6% on last year’s total. The US, and Japan remain the top two countries for filing PCT’s, accounting for nearly half of all PCT filings between them. After the US and Japan, Germany is the next highest filer, closely followed by China and then South Korea. The UK comes in at 7th in the list of top PCT filers. The number of PCT filings emanating from the UK increased by around 1%, whilst China, South Korea and Japan all experienced double digit growth in their number of PCT filings. For further information on PCT filings in 2012 see here. An international patent application is a single patent application that can be filed which facilitates the filing of patent applications in close to 150 countries. An international patent application does not directly of itself result in the grant of foreign patents. Instead national/regional patent applications, derived from the international patent application, must be filed in due course and prosecuted before their respective national/regional patent offices. An international patent application can be useful in delaying the costs of filing foreign patent applications in a large number of countries. Moreover, before the national/regional patent applications must be filed from the international patent application, an international search report is issued. The international search report is accompanied by a written opinion regarding the patentability of the invention. This can provide an insight into the chances of ultimately securing patent protection and help make decisions concerning national/regional patent application filings. If you have any questions concerning International patent applications or wish to consider how they might help your business, please contact your usual patent contact at Swindell & Pearson, or contact Martin Terry [email protected]

Swindell & Pearson has been helping businesses and individuals protect and defend their ideas, innovations and brands for over 130 years. With its head office in Derby, the firm also has offices in Stoke, Wolverhampton, Stafford, Sheffield and Burton. To find out how Swindell & Pearson can help you with any intellectual property requirements please get in touch via [email protected] or by telephone on 01332 367 051.