Better software protection in South Korea

March 12, 2020

South Korea has announced it will extend patent protection to also include software which is distributed online.

There is some, limited standardization of patent law amongst WTO countries through TRIPs. However, there are many areas where each country has its own rules. One area where there is divergence is what can be determined as a patentable software invention and in what form the patentable software invention should be claimed.

Some jurisdictions such as the US and South Korea require a special form of claim when protecting a computer program, whereas others such as the European Patent Office are less prescriptive.

South Korea has recently announced that it intends to enable patent protection to be extended beyond what is currently protected (software stored on physical media) to cover software which is distributed online.

The law is due to come into effect in March 2020. When we draft patent applications, we provide support for different claim strategies. We are therefore confident that we will be able to optimize our clients claims in Korea following the law change.