For instance a few countries will grant utility protection for inventions which only have local novelty (i.e. have already been disclosed somewhere in the world, but not in that country), whereas absolute novelty (i.e. no disclosure anywhere in the world) is usually required for patents.
In most countries where utility model protection is available, Patent Offices do not carry out a full novelty and inventiveness examination prior to registration. This means that the registration process is often significantly simpler and faster, taking, on average, six months. However, it can mean that some sort of examination must be completed later on, if the granted utility model is to be enforced against an infringer.
In some countries, utility model protection can only be obtained for certain fields of technology and only for products but not for processes. In some countries that allow utility model protection, a utility model must be chosen as an alternative to a patent while in others it can be obtained in addition to a patent.
- Absolute novelty
- Relative novelty
- Local novelty
Our patent attorneys are highly experienced in drafting, filing and enforcing utility models. In particular, we assist our clients in:
- Drafting utility model applications
- Filing with the Patent and Trademark Offices, including branching off from patents
- Revocation requests against utility models
- Infringement proceedings based on utility models, including warning letters.