You’ve created a wonderful invention. Or maybe you’ve come up with a process that you know will change people’s lives for the better.
You’re ready to shout your great idea from the rooftops. But, first, you need to get a patent.
If you’re like the majority of people, you may have some ideas about patents that aren’t quite right.
Here are 5 of the most common misconceptions about obtaining patents in Singapore.
1. You can enforce your patent while it’s still pending
If you’ve never filed a patent before, you may be under the impression that once you’ve submitted the application and your patent is pending, you have the ability to sue someone else for patent infringement.
This is not accurate information. You can only take legal action AFTER your patent has been approved.
Because patents in Singapore take two to four years to process, you won’t have a right to sue during this period.
2. Once you have a patent, it can’t be contested
Consider this scenario: You’ve developed a revolutionary process that will make life easier for many people. You applied for a patent in Singapore and, after waiting for 3 ½ years, it’s finally granted. You assume you’re in the clear, case closed, etc.
But then, a few years later, you find out that someone else has been infringing on your patent. Since your patent was granted all those years ago, you know you have a right to sue. This third-party decides to counter sue you under the guise that your original patent wasn’t valid.
As the proceedings progress in court, information comes to light that your wonderful, life-changing process was NOT new after all. The judge makes the decision to revoke your patent and dismisses your infringement lawsuit.
This may seem like a horror story, but it does happen and it reinforces the need to have experienced IP consultants supporting you through the patent process from its earliest stages.
3. Holding a patent means you can use your product or idea freely
You may be looking at a patent in the wrong way.
Being granted a patent doesn’t mean you can do what you want with your invention. It simply means that other people are excluded from exploiting your intellectual property.
To add to the confusion, there are often overlaps of patents in technology, for example. This means that one patent owner may require another to obtain a license before they can use their own idea or product.
Here’s an illustration that may help you understand the principle.
Again, this is yet another reason that you shouldn’t try to navigate the murky waters of patents in Singapore without professional help.
4. Patents in Singapore are valid anywhere in the world
When you’re granted a patent in Singapore, it is only valid in that country.
You’ll need to secure a separate patent for each country that you want your intellectual property to be protected in.
Keep in mind that each country will have its own fees and your costs will rise significantly, not to mention the amount of paperwork that will have to be managed. Don’t attempt this without experts who can guide you through the processes.
5. You don’t need the assistance of professional IP consultants
After working through each of the previous four misconceptions about patents in Singapore, the final one may not come as a surprise!
You’re seeking a patent in the first place because you want your intellectual assets to be protected. With that in mind, it makes perfect sense to be as thorough as possible throughout the entire process so that nothing falls through the cracks that could cause your application to be rejected or that could allow your patent to be nullified in the future.
You can’t do it all on your own and it’s not wise to try.
Trust the experts when filing patents in Singapore
How many of these errors in thinking are you guilty of making?
Don’t worry – filing a patent in Singapore can be a confusing process that takes a lot of time, effort, and money.
But you’ll give yourself – and your brilliant invention – the best chance at actually changing lives for the better if you work with IP consultants who have the experience and knowledge to efficiently bring your patent application to a favorable outcome.
Get in touch with Pintas for a free consultation today.