How To Patent a Product in India?

A mere idea is not patentable under Indian Patent Law, and hence, it is always advised to patent a product or process. The inventor must always conduct a thorough search before filing a patent application with the National Patent Office. This would give the inventor an idea about the patentability of the product invention.

Questioning how to patent a product? Some of the patent applications may not stand a chance of ever receiving a grant of patent, yet, they can still be very useful for the product and the inventor commercially. Filing a patent application for your product shows your vigorous intent of protecting your intellectual property.

Before filing a patent application for your product you should understand what basically product patent entails.

What is Product Patent?

All forms of intellectual property aim at providing protection for the invention or idea or a work of the mind, encouraging technological and economic development. Similarly patent provides exclusive privilege to the inventor in return for complete disclosure of the invention.

The patent under Indian law is mainly granted for process and product.

Under Process patent the method of developing a product is protected but not the end result, that is, the product. Hence, anyone coming up with the same product through different method can sell the same product commercially without paying the inventor of the product.

However, this is not the case for Product patent provides an exclusive right to the inventor over the invention completely as even if the third party comes up with a different process the end result for it is protected under patent law.

Reasons to Consider Product Patent

A 'patent pending' tag on the products that the person is pitching is for sure way of obtaining agreements from companies that have been tested and used by many of the start-up owners. For instance, many of the larger companies may refuse to sign a confidentiality agreement or may not agree to never compete with you; a 'Patent Pending' tag is for sure going to deters them.

There are ways to achieve all this through the patent application process at a reasonable cost. Here’s how to quickly gain patent protection for your product, via an ordinary or provisional patent application using a patent attorney or agent

Basic Steps to Patent a Product

Learning how to patent a product is important for all the companies, start-up and entrepreneurs as any mistake in the patent application will be a costly one and may take you a step back in your progress you have made.

Step 1:  Patent Search

Prior to getting a patent for a product, it is always recommended that you perform a complete Google search for your patent.  A patent search will help you determine if you should spend the money and time on patenting a product or should you begin commercialising on the invention. 

While a patent search is not a guarantee of patentability or as such required by the Patent Office, but it is usually considered the first step before getting a patent on a product.

Step 2:  Draft Patent Application

Based on the patent search, it can be seen that getting a patent for your product is feasible or not,  If the patent is considered feasible the next step is to prepare a patent application.  Applicant has two main options while preparing your patent application:

(1) Prepare a draft the patent application yourself or

(2) hire a qualified Patent Attorney.

Learning how to patent a product yourself can be very difficult, as it is for most experience inventors as well. Most reputable people in the invention industry will always recommend hiring a patent attorney to patent a product.

A patent attorney has years of experience in preparing and prosecuting patent applications with the Indian Patent Office and that should give your product the best chance of getting a patent.

During the preparation of your patent application for the product, your patent attorney will send you a draft of the patent application to review prior to filing it with the Patent Office. 

Step 3:  File Application

The application that is approved by you, in the next step will be filed by the patent attorney. Once the application is filed with the patent office the inventor can use a patent-pending tag.

Step 4: Patent Prosecution

Once the patent application is received by the Patent Office, they will conduct a separate patent search and send you their patentability opinion for the product. The opinion will indicate the patentability of your product. 

To patent a product, the patent attorney will have to file a Response with the Patent Office arguing why the product seeking grant deserves a patent. 

The Patent Office will respond with a Notice of Allowance which indicates that the product can receive a patent.  However, the Patent Office will send an examination report indicating that the Patent Examiner disagrees with the Response filed by you or your attorney.

Step 5:  Submitting Fee

Assuming you receive a Notice of Allowance, you will then be required to pay a government fee to get a patent on the product.  once the fees are paid to the patent office the patent is granted after that.

Generally, grant of the patent takes up to 2 to 3 years for being granted.

What is to be Included in a Product Patent Application?

Non-Provisional patent applications or a complete patent specification for your product should be made up of the following parts:

  • Abstract: This includes a short synopsis of the product for which you are applying for a patent. The abstract is usually provided for the purpose of searching. This is the first step in the application process for those seeking how to patent a product.
  • Description: This is the overall description of the product which includes the components and applications of the invention. It is the main part of the application and includes background material, references to other patent applications that are related to the invention and explanations of the drawings.
  • Claims: This is the most essential part of the application and this part is what you are claiming as a novel about your product or invention. These claims have to be very precise while allowing for future modifications or improvements. Claim 1 is the first listed claim and should only have the main features of your invention. Claims are what is used to assess the applications against each other and decide on the patentability of the invention.
  • Drawings: They are simple, 2D, black and white drawings of your invention or product and a representation of an embodiment of the invention. A patent application requires drawings, as they are necessary to understand the subject matter of the invention to be patented.
  • Prototype: Prototype for your invention may further enhance the chances for you inventions in obtaining patent protection.

Why is Important to Patent a Product?

Product patents are government-granted monopolies that give you exclusive rights to monetize your end product of the invention. Product patent regime is mainly followed in the pharmaceutical industry. Product patent can be quite valuable as they generate great royalty revenue from the patented product.

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