Experts in the field of patents and utility model law
Patents and utility models are technical industrial property rights for technical developments that are novel in comparison to the prior art, are based on an inventive step, and are industrially applicable. The holder of a patent or utility model can demand that any party that uses the protected invention without authorization for industrial or business purposes cease and desist and pay damages.
The inventive step necessary to obtain protection with a patent or utility model is deemed to be present if the new technological development is set apart from the prior art to such a degree that the proposed solution would not be obvious to a person skilled in the art (the technical field in question) merely on the basis of that person’s expertise.
Patent applications are accepted for various types of items:
- Products (e.g. technical components, chemical substances)
- Methods (e.g. processing of tool surfaces, production of fine chemicals)
- Applications (e.g. novel use of a chemical substance that is already known in itself for the treatment of a disease or medical condition)
By contrast, a utility model can only be granted for products and for the novel use of a chemical substance that is already known in itself to treat a disease or medical condition. Other uses and methods are fundamentally excluded from the protection afforded by a utility model.
- German patent or utility model application,
- European patent application,
- International patent application, and/or
- National patent application in a country other than Germany, either in Europe or elsewhere.
The formal and subject-specific prerequisites for the granting of a patent are reviewed by the competent authorities. Utility models, by contrast, are reviewed only on a formal basis and are registered without further subject-specific review.
The maximum term of a patent is 20 years from the date of registration. German utility models have a maximum term of ten years from the date of registration.
Our services in patent and utility model law
The services we offer in patent and utility model law cover all activities in this field.
In particular, we offer the following services in connection with patents and utility models:
- Implementation and analysis of patent research
- Drafting patent applications
- Submitting patent applications
- in Germany, to the German Patent and Trade Mark Office (DPMA),
- to the European Patent Office (EPO),
- as international patent applications pursuant to the international Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT),
- at the national level, to any patent office in the world in cooperation with appropriately qualified local colleagues.
- Implementation of the registration and review procedure before the relevant authorities in Germany and in other countries, right up to the granting of the patent
- Advice on matters of patent strategy
- Management of patent portfolios
- Monitoring and payment of renewal fees (fee monitoring)
- Defending patents in opposition and nullity proceedings
- Expert opinions on infringement
- Enforcing patents against infringers
- Defending against infringement actions
- Monitoring patent applications by your competitors (patent monitoring)
- Implementing opposition and nullity proceedings against your competitors’ patents