The international patent, also known as PCT, allows you to book protection worldwide. With an initially unitary procedure, the International Office proceeds to carry out a search for novelties and subsequently, if requested, a preliminary international examination following which it provides the applicant with an assessment of the possibility that the application has to be accepted. Once this phase is completed, generally after 20 or 30 months from the priority date, it will be necessary to enter the national or regional phases asking each nation to examine the invention and grant it.
From this moment on, the document will split into many national patents which will each follow its own fate and its own process. The entity from which applications are submitted is the O.M.P.I. (World Intellectual Property Organization) and is based in Geneva. The application, as in the EUROPEAN PATENT, can be submitted within 12 months of filing in Italy or immediately having, in the latter case, to take certain precautions to avoid incurring criminal penalties.
The cost of the procedure varies according to the number of states that are indicated and the possible oppositions and replies that may become necessary during the examination. The procedure envisaged by the PCT (Patent Cooperation Treaty) is quite complex and all relations with the International Patent Office must be maintained in English or French or German. To obtain this protection it is therefore not advisable to proceed alone but it is good to contact an expert.
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