Monday, 6 October 2014

Colombia announces more legal protection to be given to patent inventors

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The Colombian Superintendence of Industry and Commerce (SIC) as the authority for Industrial Property used to take approx. 63 months (more than 5 years) to grant a patent. Due to this delay, the office has been working towards speeding the request for patents and today, the average has been reduced to 24 months (2 years). It is said to be the third quickest office to grant patents after China and South Korea.

Going further, the Government issued Decree 1873 of September 29, 2014, in order to compensate in the event of a possible unjustified delay in the patent application process. However, the said compensation “does not apply to inventions on pharmaceutical products”.

Compensation is fixed as follows: for each day of ‘unreasonable delay’ in processing the patent, an additional day will be granted, counted from the last day of validity of the patent. That is, the compensation is 1 day of delay for 1 day of additional protection.

patent-approved-stampAccording to the Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, an ‘unreasonable delay’ in the granting of the patent is existent when the decision is issued in a longer time than 5 years from the filing of the application or, 3 years from when the examination of the application was requested. It is also noted that the “issuing of the decree is not only a commitment of the Government to be more efficient and give a boost to innovation, but also corresponds to commitments with countries that have signed trade agreements with Colombia.”

SIC’s inspector Mr Robledo said the “Decree constitutes an additional guarantee of protection to inventors, both domestic and foreign."

Source SIC.

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