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What are the criteria for patentability in your jurisdiction?
The Patent Office grants patents. According to Section 3 of the Patents Law 1967, to qualify for a patent, an invention must:
- be a product or process in any technological field which is new, non-obvious and susceptible to industrial use; and
- satisfy the utility requirement.
Under the Patent Office’s Patent Examination Guidelines, in order for an invention (be it a product or process) to fall within a technological field and thus be patentable, it must have real-world effect – in particular, a technical effect on a physical entity in the real world.
What are the limits on patentability?
Patents will not be granted for:
- computer programs as such;
- therapeutic treatment methods for humans; and
- new varieties of plants or animals, except for microbiological organisms not derived from nature.
Further, patents will not be granted for inventions covering business methods as such.
Are there restrictions on any other kinds of invention?
The Patents Law imposes several restrictions on inventions that affect national security and nuclear energy in Israel. With respect to inventions in these fields, the relevant minister may:
- order the Registrar of Patents to delay or refrain from taking action under the Patents Law; and
- prohibit or limit any publication regarding applications for protection of these types of inventions and the information included therein.
Under certain circumstances, these orders may include compensation for the applicant.
The Patents Law does not exclude inventions that might contravene public order from patentability.
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