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Changes to Patents Rules Proposed.

30 March, 2012

 

Legal News & Analysis – Asia Pacific – Singapore – Intellectual Property

 

On 21 March 2012, the Singapore Patent Office published a Public Consultation on proposed changes to the Patents Rules.

 

These proposed changes to the Patent Rules are complementary to the proposed changes to the Patents Act which were published in December 2011 and reported in the December edition of Pulse.

 

The proposed changes to the Patents Act and Rules are to accommodate the move of the Singapore Patent System towards a positive grant system. For example, if an examination report is positive, the Singapore Patent Office will now issue a Notice of Eligibility. The applicant can then pay the fee for grant and obtain a Singapore patent grant.

 

If the examination report is negative, a Notice of Intention to Refuse will be issued. Upon receipt of a Notice of Intention to refuse, applicants can request for a review of the negative examination report. A new examiner will then consider the negative examination report and issue an examination review report, which may be positive or negative. The Registrar will then proceed to issue a Notice of Eligibility or a Notice of Refusal as the case may be.

 

A new procedure called supplementary examination is also introduced. Supplementary examination will only be applicable to applications where the applicant has chosen to rely on the results of a “foreign route application”. At the time of placing reliance on the “foreign route application”, the applicant must file a request for supplementary examination.

 

In the supplementary examination, the examiner will focus mainly on Singapore requirements. For example, the Examiner will check to see if there are any method of treatment claims. A written opinion may also be issued after the supplementary examination has been carried out.

 

The Singapore Patent Office plans to implement the amendments to the Singapore Patents Act and Rules in October 2012.

 

 

For further information, please contact:

 

Sheena Jacob, Partner, ATMD Bird & Bird

sheena.jacob@twobirds.com

 

 

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