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Management of Patents
A patent is an intangible that you can exploit personally or by a third party. You can sell, rent, lease, pledge ... You must ensure that the acts which affect the life of your patent will be listed on the National Register of Patents, regardless of the exploitation you do. These markings are essential to make acts public and "against third parties", that is to say, considered as known by everybody.
Article 56 of the law 17/97 reported some of these acts, such as:
- The ability to transfer the rights attached to the application or patent, which:
- either includes all rights attached to the application or patent;
- or is limited only to certain rights;
- The ability to grant an exclusive license attached to the patent application or patent, the possibility also likely to take two forms:
- either the concession of the license covers all the rights conferred by the patent application or patent,
- or the concession includes only some of those rights ;
- The ability to grant a non- exclusive license which includes:
- either non-exclusive use of all rights conferred to the application or patent,
- or the grant of non-exclusive license, limited to few rights only;
- The possibility that the rights attached to the patent application or patent are subject to a pledge.
There are two types of recordings:
Recording affecting the ownership or enjoyment of rights
Partial or total grant
The ownership of a patent or an application allows the owner to transmit all or part of his interest in the patent as assignment established between the assign and the assignee. The recording of this act in the national register of patents is done by filling the form B4.
A patent or an application are licensed when the owner( the licensor) grants another party (the licensee) the authorization to exploit the patented invention for purposes mutually agreed. In this case, both parties sign a license agreement specifying the terms and scope of the agreement.
There are three types of license agreement based on the number of licensees authorized to exploit the patented invention:
- Exclusive license: when only the licensee has the right to exploit the patented technology, that even the patent owner has not the right to use;
- Unique license: when only the licensee and the patent owner have the right to use the patented technology;
- Non- exclusive license: many licensees and the patent owner have the right to use the patented technology.
The recording of license grant in the national register of patents is done by filling the form B4.
The patent is an intangible asset which you can have according to your interests or needs. You can thus renounce it partially or totally under the article 81 of law No 17-97. The act of waiver must be formulated in a written declaration (Form B6).
The article 56 of law 17-97 mentions the patent pledge among the means of rights transmission. The aim of pledge is to raise funds for the company. To record the patent pledge in the national register of patents, B6 form should be filled.
Recording of changes on the identification of the owner
This type of recording principally concerns transactions of certain data changes such as the name of the patent owner or change of address, and the legal form in the case of a company.
For this type of recording, you must complete Form B3.
The payment of your annuities keeps your patent in force for a period of 20 years maximum. After this period, your invention enters the public domain, that is to say, it does not receive more protection and that anyone can use it.
According to article 82 of law 17/97, The fees for the maintenance of patent shall be paid to the body responsible for industrial property in the years following the year in which the patent was issued. The first annuity is included in the filling fee.
The payment of the maintenance of due fees can be made for a further period of six months running from the date of expiry of the initial period. In absence of payment on the latter date, the OMPIC addresses a warning to the patent holder or his attorney, stating that in case of non-payment within six months of the due date, he will be deprived of his rights.
The absences of warning does not assume any liability of the OMPIC and does not constitute a cause of restoring the rights of the patent holder (Article 82 of Law No. 17/97).