After a period of consultation, the UKIPO and UK government have announced some patent fee changes that are expected to come into effect on 6 April 2018.

Application fee – Currently £30 for paper applications and £20 for an e-filing – Rising to £90 for paper applications and £60 for an e-filing – New surcharge of 25% if the application fee not paid on filing

Search fee – For UK applications: rising to £150 for requests filed electronically and £180 for requests filed on paper – For the UK national phase of international applications: rising to £120 (e-filing) and £150 (paper)

Examination fee – Currently £80 (e-filing) and £100 (paper) – Rising to £100 (e-filing) and £130 (paper)

Excess claim fees – New charge of £20 per claim for claim 26 and above

Grant fee – New grant fee if the number of excess claims increases over the threshold of 26 claims and above – £20 per new claim

Page fee – New page fee of £10 per page over 35

Renewal fees – £10 increase to renewal fees for years 12 and onwards

Reason for the changes

The objective of the fee changes is summarised in the announcement as follows:

  • Maintain an internationally-competitive fee structure, based on modern, high quality and efficient services for the customer
  • Achieve a modest shift towards prompt cost recovery, whilst continuing to meet the bulk of the IPO costs of granting a patent from renewal fees rather than at the time the work is carried out
  • Maintain a sustainable income stream on reasonable assumptions to finance the IPO’s future activities
  • Encourage good filing practice by applicants