Earlier this year, the Canadian Patent Office announced that it will increase its official fees on January 1, 2024, in some cases by as much as 36%.
As a cost-saving measure, applicants and patentees may wish to pay upcoming Patent Office fees before the fee increases come into effect. Here are three ways that applicants could save on official fees that might be paid early:
- Maintenance fees – Any number of future annual maintenance fees can be paid in 2023.
- Examination fee – If the Canadian (PCT) filing date is before October 30, 2019, the examination fee must be paid within five years of the filing date. If the Canadian (PCT) filing date is on or after October 30, 2019, the examination fee must be paid within four years of the filing date. In any case, the examination fee may be paid earlier.
- Divisional applications – The greatest savings may be realized in divisional applications. All past-due maintenance fees from the second anniversary onward are payable when a divisional application is filed. In most instances, the deadline for requesting examination will be three months from filing. Of course, the filing fee must also be paid. The government fees payable with a divisional application may therefore be substantial. A divisional application may be filed as late as the day before grant of the parent patent. However, if it anticipated that a divisional application will be filed soon, costs will be reduced by filing it in 2023.