Govt reduces patent fees for educational institutions by 80 percent
The central government introduced Patents (Amendment) Rules, 2021 on Tuesday which reduced the fee for patent filing and prosecution for educational institutions by 80 percent. The move has been taken to strengthen innovation and creativity in the knowledge economy.
The Ministry of Commerce and Industry in a press release on Thursday said, “In order to create a conducive environment for innovation, the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade has been working towards promoting greater collaboration between industry and academia. This can be achieved by facilitating commercialization of research undertaken in educational institutions.”
The high patenting fee was a hindrance for educational institutions in getting newer research and technologies patented and hence worked as a disincentive for the development of newer technologies, the ministry noted. While applying for patents, innovators had to apply for these in the name of institutions that were required to pay exorbitant patenting fees. However, now the official fees payable by them in reference to the Patents Rules, 2003, have been reduced through the Patents (Amendment) Rules, 2021.
In addition, the government amended the patent rules in 2016, 2017, 2019 and 2020 to remove procedural inconsistencies and unnecessary steps in the processing of patent applications thereby. These have helped expedite the grant, registration and final disposal process, and make these more efficient, user-friendly, and compatible for e-transactions.
The department has taken key initiatives in this regard. These include augmentation of manpower by recruiting new examiners; making the patenting process completely online; hearing of patenting cases through video-conferencing for speedy and contact-less proceedings; dynamic redesigning of the website and real-time based hassle-free dissemination of IP information to stakeholders.
In addition, the mechanism of lodging feedback and complaints regarding the functioning of IP offices has been set up on the IPO website. Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade in collaboration with the office of Controller General of Patents, Designs & Trade Marks (CGPDTM) is regularly engaged in the dissemination of information to IP stakeholders through awareness activities in IPR which are conducted for schools, universities, industries, legal and enforcement agencies and other stakeholders.
The ministry also noted that these reforms have helped decrease the time taken for the examination of patents, and it is expected that the time for final disposal of patents, which has already been reduced to an average of 48 months at present as compared to a few years earlier, will be reduced further to an average of 24-30 months by the end of 2021.
“An Expedited Examination System has been introduced wherein an application for grant of patent is being decided within one year of filing such request under Expedited Examination as compared to the period of few years required in case of normal examination route,” the ministry notified in the press release.