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Article · 07.06.2021

Patents – Q&A

“Patents aren’t just about protecting yourself, but are also about getting your business to where you want it to be.”

We could not have said it better ourselves! The quote derives from one of our customers – Hydract – which attributed a key role to its patent for a ground-breaking technology in connection with the company’s initial public offering.

Do patents pay off?

If you have also invented a new technology, a new process or something else, it would be a good idea to check whether you are able to obtain patent protection of your invention.

A patent gives you the exclusive right to the principle(s) behind the invention, and it prevents others from manufacturing or selling a similar product unless they have an agreement with you, for example in the form of a license agreement. The patent not only prevents others from stealing your invention – it also adds value to the business and protects your competitive strength.

Patents contribute to making the business more attractive to new collaboration partners, such as investors or licensees. In other words, a patent right is an investment in future competitiveness.

Several studies confirm that there is a significant positive correlation between IPRs (intellectual property rights such as patents) and a company’s financial performance.

What may be patented?

Generally, three criteria must be met in order to patent an invention.

The first criterion is novelty, which means that the invention must not already have been made public. We have worked with patents for many years and have access to different data bases, allowing us to help you find out whether a similar invention is already on the market. We undertake a so-called novelty search, which is an important step prior to initiating the actual application process. In this way, you avoid applying to patent an invention already patented by others. With respect to the novelty requirement, it is also essential that you do not show or mention your invention at trade fairs, in articles or in any other way before a patent application has been filed.

The second criterion to satisfy is the so-called inventive step. This means that your product or process must be innovative and differ significantly from the technologies and solutions already available within the relevant field. Also in this context, a novelty search may be relevant.

The third criterion concerns the industrial applicability of your invention.

How do you apply for a patent?

First and foremost, you should consider the geographical location where it makes sense to protect your invention.

Is it relevant only in Denmark or does the business also have activities in export markets? This is relevant to determine the type of application to file.

It is possible to make a national application in Denmark or another country, but you may also file a European (EP application) or an international application (PCT application).

Consequently, it is important to define a strategy for the markets in which the product is to be sold now and in the future.

At Patrade, we have long-standing experience in patents and in preparing patent applications. To ensure the best start possible, we recommend making a novelty search in different data bases.

Against this background, we can assess in advance whether the invention will meet the patent application requirements, but we also use the results from the novelty search to design and prepare the patent application so that it will meet the requirements of the various patent authorities in terms of format, while also providing you, as our customer, with the greatest possible value in terms of scope of protection.

Naturally, we will also handle all the correspondence until your patent has been issued – either directly with the authorities or, where necessary, through our international network of highly skilled and carefully selected agents and collaboration partners.

How do you get the most out of your patent?

If, after the patent has been issued, a need arises to prepare licenses, sell rights or, perhaps, handle legal disputes, we can help you throughout any such process. So if you have an idea or want to perform a review and update your company’s portfolio of rights, please contact one of our patent attorneys.

For how long is a patent valid?

A patent right is valid for up to twenty years. A renewal fee is payable once a year.

How long does it take to obtain a patent?

It can take between one and four years to obtain a patent.
How much does it cost to patent an invention?
The cost of patenting an invention differs and depends on the individual invention. We recommend that you contact one of our patent consultants, who will be able to offer advice and can give you an estimate of how much time will be required to patent your specific invention.

How do you discover if your patent has been infringed?

You do so by way of patent monitoring, which allows you to monitor your own patent and any measures taken by the competition.

You can monitor specific products and technologies as a way of staying up to date on upcoming inventions in your business area. In short, patent monitoring is an easy, inexpensive and effective method to support you in developing new products. It simplifies navigating around third-party patent rights, while at the same time making it easier to protect and enforce your own rights.

Read more about our monitoring services.

Do you have any other questions regarding patents?

If you have further questions regarding patents, please contact one of our experts who will be happy to assist you.

Please contact us, we are ready to help Contact