Patent law

Patents protect technical inventions.

A patent owner can lay claim to an invention and bar others from producing, selling or using the invention without his or her prior authorization. A patent owner may transfer this right to others, either by selling the patent or concluding licensing agreements. A patent is valid only for a certain country or region and only for a certain period of time.

Patents can be filed, for example, at the German Patent and Trademark Office (GPTO) or at the European Patent Office (EPO).

Utility models are often referred to as "small patents" and, similar to the patent, protect technical inventions. In contrast to patents, utility models can only be registered in a relatively small number of countries and usually involve the following: a shorter period of protection and a lesser range of protectionable matter (In Germany, method claims are excluded from the scope of protection).

Since the utility model is registered by the patent office without an substantive examination, filing a utility model can often be a less expensive means of attaining protection, while still achieving the same rights as offered by a granted patent.

For patent matters we work closely in cooperation with the law firm LifeTech IP Spies & Behrndt Patent Attorneys to assist applicants with issues that arise during patent or utility model applications.