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Basic Knowledge About Patent Registration

Patents are legal documents issued to protect new inventions and product designs. A patent provide exclusively rights to its owner to exclude others from making, using, selling, offering for sale or importing the patented invention or industrial design. Patentable matter can be a functional product, and product manufacturing or improvement process, or ornamental (non-functional) design—including shape, pattern, and color—of the product. In exchange for such rights, the patent owner must provide full disclosure of the matter to be patented. Without a patent, it is next to impossible for any inventors or product designers to protect their ideas and make considerable profits when licensing it out to others.

Under the patent law of Thailand, there are 3 kinds of patents which applicants are eligible to obtain:

Invention Patent

Petty Patent

Industrial Design

1

Invention Patent

  • Protects functional aspects of the invention.
  • Patent owner may receive up to 20 Years of protection, starting from the first filing date.

3 Criteria to Obtain an Invention Patent:

  1. New
    Invention must be globally new. Applicant must check prior arts by conducting thorough patent searches in various patent databases, journal publications, magazines, news, and all information sources whereby similar inventions may be mentioned. In addition, the applicant shall not disclose any significant details of the invention prior to the first filing date. This may include all forms of public disclosure at a trade show or academic conference, or publishing contents related to the invention in journal article, newspaper, blog, magazine, etc.
  2. Non Obvious (i.e. Inventive Step)
    Invention must be non-obvious to those who are considered experts in the field(s) related to the invention. Namely, your invention must truly have a “wow factor”. If someone in the field, including patent examiner, believes the invention is easy for anyone in the field to comprehend, create, or carry out, the invention may not be patentable. Non-obviousness is quite difficult to determine, but with thorough prior arts searching, you shall be able to conclude whether your invention is technically more advanced than previous inventions. One effective way to convince the examiner of your invention’s non-obviousness is to systematically back up your patent application with data and results that were carried out through series of standard experimentations.
  3. Industrial Applicable
    Yes, the invention must have some practical value in certain industry. In Thailand, however, patentable invention shall not be the ones that may post serious public threats to the country, such as new type of biological weapon or a credit card information hacking device. In addition, even though certain inventions have high industrial applicability and do not post public threats, they are prohibited under the Thai Patent Law. These UNPATENTABLE inventions are as follows:
  • Microorganisms or part of microorganisms that are presented in nature, as well as Plants, Animals, or Extracts from Plants or Animals
  • Theories and Laws of Science and Mathematics
  • Computer databases, programs, and software
  • Diagnosis and treatment methods for human and animal disorders

Examples of inventions that may be protected with invention patents:

  • A new detergent formula comprising of various natural (non-petroleum based) ingredients. The natural ingredients, taken from various parts of the globe, when combined (with experimental results) becomes safer for humans and are more effective in killing germs and removing stains than the conventional detergents.
  • A new hydrogen-based hybrid vehicle system that have is proven to be more safe and cost-effective than other hybrid vehicles in the market.
  • A new just-in-time and digitized manufacturing process of golf clubs that enables customers to pick shapes, sizes, slopes, and materials for their golf clubs. Through this process and its apparatus, the golf clubs will be instantly made in front of the concerned customer.

2

Petty Patent (i.e. Utility Model)

  • Patent owner may receive up to 6 years of protection from the first filing date, and may be eligible to renewal twice, up to 2 years each, for the total of 10 years.
  • Non-obviousness factor (i.e. Inventive Step) will not be considered.
  • Suitable for invention with minor improvement or simple invention.
  • Not eligible for protection in some countries.

2 Criteria to Obtain a Petty Patent:

  1. New
    Invention must be globally new. Applicant must check prior arts by conducting thorough patent searches in various patent databases, journal publications, magazines, news, and all information sources whereby similar inventions may be mentioned. In addition, the applicant shall not disclose any significant details of the invention prior to the first filing date. This may include all forms of public disclosure at a trade show or academic conference, or publishing contents related to the invention in journal article, newspaper, blog, magazine, etc.
  2. Industrial Applicable
    Yes, the invention must have some practical value in certain industry. In Thailand, however, patentable invention shall not be the ones that may post serious threats to the country, such as new type of biological weapon or a credit card information hacking device. In addition, even though certain inventions have high industrial applicability and do not post public threats, they are prohibited under the Thai Patent Law. These UNPATENTABLE inventions are as follows:
  • Microorganisms or part of microorganisms that are presented in nature, as well as Plants, Animals, or Extracts from Plants or Animals
  • Theories and Laws of Science and Mathematics
  • Computer databases, programs, and software
  • Diagnosis and treatment methods for human and animal disorders

o Examples of inventions that may be protected with petty patents:

  • A new golf club partition to be placed on a golf bag. This partition helps user to organize and secure golf his/her clubs in place. The partition also comes with a built-in pockets to put in items like gloves, golf balls, and tees.
  • A heating pot with a curved-in bottom to help increase level of concentrated heat and thereby making the noodles cooked faster.
  • A new cosmetic formula wherein an additional gold nanoparticles can give a sparkling effect on its user’s skin.

3

Industrial Design (i.e. Design Patent)

  • Protects ornamental design only (non-functional)
  • Patent owner can receive up to 10 years of protection from the first filing date

2 Criteria to Obtain an Industrial Design:

  1. New
    Industrial design must be globally new. Applicant must check prior arts by conducting thorough patent searches in various patent databases, journal publications, magazines, news, and all information sources whereby similar designs may be mentioned or showed. In addition, the applicant shall not disclose the industrial design prior to the first filing date. This may include all forms of public disclosure at a trade show, art gallery, or academic conference, or publishing contents related to the industrial design in journal article, newspaper, blog, magazine, etc.
  2. Industrial Applicable
    The industrial design must have some practical value in certain industry. In Thailand, however, industrial design shall not be against country’s moral and religious values, such as a clock design that is shaped like a human genital or a work lamp that is shaped like a Buddhist’s head statue.

Examples of designs that may be protected as industrial designs:

  • A plant pot with a rounded bottom
  • A refrigerator with penguin like shape
  • Varieties of new designs for a motorcycle with similar functions

Note:

  • Regulations and procedures for registering a patent in Thailand can be found in the patent section of the Department of Intellectual Property website
  • For registering an invention patent or petty patent in foreign countries, please file through the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) system or directly consult with patent attorneys or IP offices in the countries of interest. Thai citizens or foreigners residing in Thailand or in the PCT contracting states may file PCT applications with the Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Commerce. The receiving office is located on the 6th Floor. To find out more about filing your patent application through the PCT system, you may visit the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) or Department of Intellectual Property website
  • For registering an industrial design in foreign countries, please directly consult with patent attorneys or IP offices in the countries of interest.
  • Thailand is not yet a part of the Hague System, which is an international design patent registration system. However, to obtain more information about how to file your industrial design through the Hague System, please visit: http://www.wipo.int/hague/en/

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Basic Knowledge About Patent Registration

Patents are legal documents issued to protect new inventions and product designs. A patent provide exclusively rights to its owner to exclude others from making, using, selling, offering for sale or importing the patented invention or industrial design. Patentable matter can be a functional product, and product manufacturing or improvement process, or ornamental (non-functional) design—including shape, pattern, and color—of the product. In exchange for such rights, the patent owner must provide full disclosure of the matter to be patented. Without a patent, it is next to impossible for any inventors or product designers to protect their ideas and make considerable profits when licensing it out to others.

Under the patent law of Thailand, there are 3 kinds of patents which applicants are eligible to obtain:

Invention Patent

Petty Patent

Industrial Design

1

Invention Patent

  • Protects functional aspects of the invention.
  • Patent owner may receive up to 20 Years of protection, starting from the first filing date.

3 Criteria to Obtain an Invention Patent:

  1. New
    Invention must be globally new. Applicant must check prior arts by conducting thorough patent searches in various patent databases, journal publications, magazines, news, and all information sources whereby similar inventions may be mentioned. In addition, the applicant shall not disclose any significant details of the invention prior to the first filing date. This may include all forms of public disclosure at a trade show or academic conference, or publishing contents related to the invention in journal article, newspaper, blog, magazine, etc.
  2. Non Obvious (i.e. Inventive Step)
    Invention must be non-obvious to those who are considered experts in the field(s) related to the invention. Namely, your invention must truly have a “wow factor”. If someone in the field, including patent examiner, believes the invention is easy for anyone in the field to comprehend, create, or carry out, the invention may not be patentable. Non-obviousness is quite difficult to determine, but with thorough prior arts searching, you shall be able to conclude whether your invention is technically more advanced than previous inventions. One effective way to convince the examiner of your invention’s non-obviousness is to systematically back up your patent application with data and results that were carried out through series of standard experimentations.
  3. Industrial Applicable
    Yes, the invention must have some practical value in certain industry. In Thailand, however, patentable invention shall not be the ones that may post serious public threats to the country, such as new type of biological weapon or a credit card information hacking device. In addition, even though certain inventions have high industrial applicability and do not post public threats, they are prohibited under the Thai Patent Law. These UNPATENTABLE inventions are as follows:
  • Microorganisms or part of microorganisms that are presented in nature, as well as Plants, Animals, or Extracts from Plants or Animals
  • Theories and Laws of Science and Mathematics
  • Computer databases, programs, and software
  • Diagnosis and treatment methods for human and animal disorders

Examples of inventions that may be protected with invention patents:

  • A new detergent formula comprising of various natural (non-petroleum based) ingredients. The natural ingredients, taken from various parts of the globe, when combined (with experimental results) becomes safer for humans and are more effective in killing germs and removing stains than the conventional detergents.
  • A new hydrogen-based hybrid vehicle system that have is proven to be more safe and cost-effective than other hybrid vehicles in the market.
  • A new just-in-time and digitized manufacturing process of golf clubs that enables customers to pick shapes, sizes, slopes, and materials for their golf clubs. Through this process and its apparatus, the golf clubs will be instantly made in front of the concerned customer.

2

Petty Patent (i.e. Utility Model)

  • Patent owner may receive up to 6 years of protection from the first filing date, and may be eligible to renewal twice, up to 2 years each, for the total of 10 years.
  • Non-obviousness factor (i.e. Inventive Step) will not be considered.
  • Suitable for invention with minor improvement or simple invention.
  • Not eligible for protection in some countries.

2 Criteria to Obtain a Petty Patent:

  1. New
    Invention must be globally new. Applicant must check prior arts by conducting thorough patent searches in various patent databases, journal publications, magazines, news, and all information sources whereby similar inventions may be mentioned. In addition, the applicant shall not disclose any significant details of the invention prior to the first filing date. This may include all forms of public disclosure at a trade show or academic conference, or publishing contents related to the invention in journal article, newspaper, blog, magazine, etc.
  2. Industrial Applicable
    Yes, the invention must have some practical value in certain industry. In Thailand, however, patentable invention shall not be the ones that may post serious threats to the country, such as new type of biological weapon or a credit card information hacking device. In addition, even though certain inventions have high industrial applicability and do not post public threats, they are prohibited under the Thai Patent Law. These UNPATENTABLE inventions are as follows:
  • Microorganisms or part of microorganisms that are presented in nature, as well as Plants, Animals, or Extracts from Plants or Animals
  • Theories and Laws of Science and Mathematics
  • Computer databases, programs, and software
  • Diagnosis and treatment methods for human and animal disorders

o Examples of inventions that may be protected with petty patents:

  • A new golf club partition to be placed on a golf bag. This partition helps user to organize and secure golf his/her clubs in place. The partition also comes with a built-in pockets to put in items like gloves, golf balls, and tees.
  • A heating pot with a curved-in bottom to help increase level of concentrated heat and thereby making the noodles cooked faster.
  • A new cosmetic formula wherein an additional gold nanoparticles can give a sparkling effect on its user’s skin.

3

Industrial Design (i.e. Design Patent)

  • Protects ornamental design only (non-functional)
  • Patent owner can receive up to 10 years of protection from the first filing date

2 Criteria to Obtain an Industrial Design:

  1. New
    Industrial design must be globally new. Applicant must check prior arts by conducting thorough patent searches in various patent databases, journal publications, magazines, news, and all information sources whereby similar designs may be mentioned or showed. In addition, the applicant shall not disclose the industrial design prior to the first filing date. This may include all forms of public disclosure at a trade show, art gallery, or academic conference, or publishing contents related to the industrial design in journal article, newspaper, blog, magazine, etc.
  2. Industrial Applicable
    The industrial design must have some practical value in certain industry. In Thailand, however, industrial design shall not be against country’s moral and religious values, such as a clock design that is shaped like a human genital or a work lamp that is shaped like a Buddhist’s head statue.

Examples of designs that may be protected as industrial designs:

  • A plant pot with a rounded bottom
  • A refrigerator with penguin like shape
  • Varieties of new designs for a motorcycle with similar functions

Note:

  • Regulations and procedures for registering a patent in Thailand can be found in the patent section of the Department of Intellectual Property website
  • For registering an invention patent or petty patent in foreign countries, please file through the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) system or directly consult with patent attorneys or IP offices in the countries of interest. Thai citizens or foreigners residing in Thailand or in the PCT contracting states may file PCT applications with the Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Commerce. The receiving office is located on the 6th Floor. To find out more about filing your patent application through the PCT system, you may visit the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) or Department of Intellectual Property website
  • For registering an industrial design in foreign countries, please directly consult with patent attorneys or IP offices in the countries of interest.
  • Thailand is not yet a part of the Hague System, which is an international design patent registration system. However, to obtain more information about how to file your industrial design through the Hague System, please visit: http://www.wipo.int/hague/en/
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