The Government of India, Ministry of Commerce and Industry (Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion) has published the Patent (Amendment) Rules, 2014 on 28 February 2014. The amendments are effective from the date of publication.
The salient aspects of the amended rules include:
Applicant: Introduction of a third category of applicant for patent in the form of “small entity”.
The fees charged to small entity applicants have been fixed in between the fees for a natural person and a large entity. The applicants can now be categorized as follows:
- Natural Person Applicant: Any natural person either alone or jointly with other natural persons. Small Entity Applicant: An enterprise (proprietorship, Hindu undivided family, association of persons, co-operative society, partnership firm, company or undertaking) engaged in “manufacture or production of goods” or “providing or rendering of services”, with the following limitation of investment:
- Enterprise engaged in “manufacture or production of goods” with an investment in plant and machinery not exceeding ten (10) crore rupees. (Approx. US$ 1,611,085)
- Enterprise engaged in “providing or rendering of services” with an investment in equipment not exceeding five (5) crore rupees. (Approx. US$ 805,545)
- In case of Small Entity applicant status, the applicant needs to provide an evidence for the same. Such evidence has to be filed at least once with the particular application number.
- Large Entity Applicant: An applicant other than a Natural Person or Small Entity.
Official Fee: Establishment of a revised fee structure for filing of patent application as well as other proceedings before the Patent Office.
The revised fee structure is as follows:
Natural Person: Approx. 60% increase from the previous fee for a natural person.
Small Entity: Equivalent to the previous fee for a large entity.
Large Entity: Approx. 100% increase from the previous fee.
Copy of the revised fee schedule can be downloaded here.
Furthermore, filing an application or document with the Patent Office in hard copy (i.e., not availing the e-filing facility/online mode) would incur an additional 10% official fee in the respective category.
Also, in case of partial or full transfer of an application from an applicant with Small Entity status to an applicant with Large Entity status, the difference, if any, in the scale of fee(s) between the fee for Small Entity and the fee for Large Entity, in the same matter, is to be paid by the new applicant along with the request for transfer.