On March 7 2016 the Taiwan Intellectual Property Office (TIPO) amended Article 86 of the Enforcement Rules of the Patent Act to extend the period of postponement for the publication of patents from three months to six months. The amended article took effect on March 9 2016.

Due to TIPO efforts to accelerate examinations of pending patent applications, the average time required to conclude an invention patent application is less than 25 months, while that of a utility model patent application is around four months.

Patent applicants may need to postpone the publication of their patents when considering industrial strategy and global patent deployment. However, from a public perspective, the postponement of patent publication delays awareness of the patent's technical contents and may result in repetitive research and investment. Moreover, it is disputed whether a patent applicant can enforce a patent during the postponement period.

TIPO has compromised and adopted the proposal to extend the period of publication postponement to six months by amending Article 86. As a result, patent applicants have more time to consider patent deployment based on their industrial strategy.

For further information on this topic please contact Kate Shu-Yin Chu at Lee and Li Attorneys at Law by telephone (+886 2 2715 3300) or email (sychu@leeandli.com). The Lee and Li website can be accessed at www.leeandli.com.

This article was first published by the International Law Office, a premium online legal update service for major companies and law firms worldwide. Register for a free subscription.