How your patent application is processed (page 1 of 4)

Before your application is examined

1. The first steps

If the patent application you have filed is in good order and you have paid the correct fee, we will give your application a number and a filing date, and open a file. We will send you a filing certificate within four weeks of receiving your application. See the fees for filing (Part I, Item 1), and for completing your application (Part I, Item 2).

If your application is not complete, we will let you know what is wrong by mail within four weeks of receiving your application. If your application is still not complete after 15 months from the priority date or from the filing date, you may have to pay a completion fee (Part I, Item 2).

For more information, contact us.

Entering the national phase

If you filed an international application using the Patent Cooperation Treaty and designated Canada, you can now enter the national phase in Canada. If the application you have filed is in good order and you have paid the correct fee, we will give your application a number and a national entry date, and open a file. We will send you information about the national entry within eight weeks of receiving your application. See the fees for filing (Part I, Item I), and for completing your application (Part I, Item 2).

If your application is not complete, we will let you know what is wrong by mail within eight weeks of receiving your application. If your application is still incomplete three months after it enters the national phase, you may have to pay a completion fee.

2. Classifying your application

The Patent Office uses the International Patent Classification (IPC) system to sort your application within the proper technical field.

We will not contact you to tell you about the work we are doing at this stage. You do not have to pay any fees at this stage.

For more information, contact us.

3. Your invention’s information goes public

(Canadian applications only)

The public is allowed to read the information in your patent application 18 months after your filing date in Canada, or 18 months after the date that you made a foreign filing, whichever is first (this is the application’s priority date).

At this stage, CIPO puts a copy of your application in the Public Search Room and also puts it on our website. We will not contact you to tell you about the work we are doing at this stage.

There are no fees for making a patent available to the public.

For more information, contact us.

PCT applications

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) will publish your patent application 18 months after filing. After this 18-month period, if it enters the national phase, your application and any documents on file will be available for inspection at CIPO.


| | Prior to examination |
| | Examination | After examination |

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