From 1st October 2014, you will be able to identify your patented product with a web address instead of the patent number and country of the patent.

Present situation

We currently recommend that if you are applying for a patent and have been given the status ‘patent pending’ or ‘patent applied for’, or if your patent is granted, then you should display your patent number and country of application on your product.

If you do not display this information, then no damages can be sought against a patent infringer who is able to prove that they were unaware of the existence of the disputed patent.

What’s changing

From 1st October 2014, you will be able to mark your product with a web address and be able to benefit in the same way as if you had marked it as outlined above. The requirement is that the webpage clearly associates the patent number with that product.

An example of the information that could be provided is at www.tivo.com/patents (the US law has already changed).

Comment

Patent owners will still have the option of marking their product with relevant patent numbers, or not marking their product at all, but this pragmatic and practical change by the UK IPO should reduce the burden on patent owners and make it easy to find and keep up to date information on patented products.

The detailed UK IPO business guidance on this matter can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/325027/webmarking-_factsheet.pdf