It is understood that patenting is an expensive and extensive process. Usually while filing a patent, only the statutory filing fees and the professional fees are disclosed. However, after the filing, there are certain other fees that are to be paid to the Indian Patent Office (IPO). Therefore, it is imperative that one should understand the patent procedure and realize the fee break-up while applying for a patent.
While approaching a patent attorney, a bundled fee consisting of the statutory fees and the professional fees would be disclosed. The professional fees vary from attorney to attorney. Herein, only the statutory fee is disclosed.
Filing- Firstly, while filing a patent application, the status of the applicant- whether a natural person or other than natural person - is considered. ‘Other than natural person’ may include a legal entity; it may also include a legal entity and a natural person jointly. Whereas a natural person’s fee for filing an application is marked at Rs. 1000/-, fees for others is marked at Rs.4000/-.
Specification and Claims- The IPO levies no fees for a specification up to 30 pages and up to 10 claims. However, if the specification exceeds 30 pages, then a fee of Rs. 100/- per page for natural person (Rs.400/- per page in case of ‘other than natural person’) is levied. Similarly, no fee is charged for a maximum of 10 claims. However, if there are more than 10 claims, then a fee of Rs 200/- for natural person (Rs. 800/- in case of ‘other than natural person’) is charged per extra claim.
Early Publication- All patent applications filed are published in the Patent Office Journal after 18 months from date of filing of the application. However, if the publication needs to be hastened, then there is an option of early publication by filing Form-9 and making appropriate payments. The fee for early publication is Rs.2500/- for natural person and Rs. 10,000/- for others. If early publication is opted, the application will be published within one month from the date of request.
Request for Examination- Applications are examined only when the examination fees are paid by the Application; otherwise, the applications are deemed to be abandoned. Fee for examination needs to be paid within a period of 48 months from the date of priority or date of filing of the application. It is to be kept in mind that earlier payment of fees entitles earlier examination, thus hastening the patent procedure. The prescribed fees for examination are Rs. 2,500/- for natural person and Rs. 10,000/- for others.
These are the statutory fees that are most important to keep in mind while filing a patent application. Besides these, there are opposition fees, fees for requesting an extension of time as well as renewal fees.