Visegrad Patent Institute
On the 1st July 2016 the Visegrad Patent Institute (VPI) began its activity. It was founded as a result of expanding cooperation between national offices of industry property of members of the Visegrad Group (the Czech Republic, Hungary, the Republic of Poland, the Slovak Republic).
Visegrad Patent Institute is modelled on the Nordic Patent Institute, created in collaboration by Denmark, Iceland and Norway, which operates in a similar way. On 26th February 2015, in Bratislava, the representatives of the founding countries signed an agreement on the Visegrad Patent Institute. Then, after the ratification by all members, International Patent Cooperation Union acting on the basis of Patent Cooperation Treat under World Intellectual Property Office appointed Visegrad Patent Institute as an International Searching Authority (ISA) and International Preliminary Examining Authority (IPEA).
Filling the gap
The group of countries of Central Europe and Baltic States was the only group in Europe, that did not have suitable International Authority of PCT. Establishment of the Visegrad Patent Institute filled this gap and also should contribute to the economic development, competitiveness and promotion of innovation in this region of Europe. What is more, VPI is the third regional institution (European Patent Office, Nordic Patent Institute) with powers of International Searching Authority.
Easier and cheaper
Filing a patent in PCT procedure was, sometimes, too expensive for small and medium-sized enterprises, so they did not decide to apply for protection. After establishing of the Visegrad Patent Institute this situation should have changed.
Firstly, it is easier: applicant may now commission one of the members’ office to carry out search or preliminary examination in the language of the chosen country. Then, you should be provided translation into one of ten languages specified in the PCT regulations within 14 months from the priority date, so you have more time to translate (previously: either immediately or within a month).
Secondly, it is cheaper: if the application is based on priority and applicant will submit a search report, he will receive a 40% refund (will pay 750 euro instead of 1875 euro). Moreover, if you file an application for European patent under PCT procedure and you will submit a search report from the Visegrad Patent Institute, you will pay only 190 euro instead of 1300 euro for additional European search report.
The Visegrad Patent Institute is an organisation, which should facilitate small and medium-sized enterprises to access the PCT patent protection and to raise awareness in this field of patents. The VPI became a competition and an alternative, which was necessary in this part of Europe.
The information was prepared by Kamil Trzaskoś of KG Legal Polish Law Firm. KG Legal provides specialised legal assistance to IT, Life Science as well as investment processes in Poland and organises networking between Polish and international companies and research centres.