A patent application contains a various section that plays a vital role in obtaining protection for the inventive process or product. Complete Specification Patent can be said to be a techno-legal document, which specifies the scientific background of the invention, and also defines the Claims of the inventor to the Patent rights.
The patent claim usually contains technical and scientific facts that define the scope of protection for the invention. They are usually framed in a comprehensive way, which includes the complete explanation of the technical aspects of the invention.
The Right to exclusive use of the invention and the Scope of Protection for the invention are defined in the Claims filed by the applicant with the Controller of Trademark and Patents.
Simply put, the Patent Claims lays down what patent does and does not protect.
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Claims under the Indian patent law have been classified on the basis of drafting, inventiveness, and structure.
Original or independent claims are also commonly known as "Principle claims". They need to clearly define the essential features of the novel invention. The inventive processes or products need to be properly defined with respect to the ‘prior art’ as well.
There can be multiple independent claims for an invention and are broader in their scope of protection.
Dependent claims are supported by independent claims. The claims can depend on one or more independent claims listed in the specification.
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Claims that are directed for the protection of product itself are considered product claims under the Indian Patent law.
For instance, new pharmaceutical products are protected through the submission of these claims. The inventor will need to submit the chemical composition of the product which he seeks to protect.
Example: A mold involved in shaping molten steel.
This claim usually involves claiming protection for a product but through the process involved in developing the product.
Such claims are filed for a new and innovative process, which has a specific end result. It is to be understood that the end result will not receive protection, only the process would.
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They are the most significant and commonly used claims by patent applicants. They are broadly applicable as they cover any use of the composition of matter involved in the process.
The inventor can claim protection under these claims if the applicant or the inventor finds that the invention differs in the ‘prior art search’.
These claims are mostly used for any computer-related invention as they are not considered conventional patent claims. These claims have to define the scope of the invention. The terms used in the claim must be definitive and must be supported by the description of the specification.
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The preamble helps in identifying the category of the invention. The preamble of the invention must be listed in such a way that it conforms to the title of the invention. The preamble is used in the very first claim of the invention.
Transitional phrase determines whether the claims are limited only to the elements listed or whether they cover the other additional elements.
There are two types of transitional phrases available:
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The body of the claim is followed immediately after the transitional phrase. The body should contain an explanation regarding the different elements included in the specification. The body should also contain the limitations of the claim.
Claims define the scope of protection. While drafting the claims, it’s important that the inventor ensures that the claims seek neither more protection nor less than what the inventor intends
While drafting the claims, the applicant or the patent agent must keep the following general principle in mind:
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