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Coming soon: Electronic patent issuance

From: Canadian Intellectual Property Office

On , the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) is launching electronic patent issuance!

The issued patent will include the same information as it currently does, but the format and how you receive it will change. You will now receive it digitally.

CIPO would like to thank stakeholders for their comments and feedback, which have shaped the implementation of this new service. The patent agent community has asked us to provide more details about the change before the launch date so that they can update their internal processes and be prepared when this comes into effect.

The following questions and answers are provided as a response to this request from our clients for more information.

How will the patent look in electronic form?

On the patent, the digital signature will replace the physical Patent Office seal. Clients will now see a visual representation of the seal placed on the patent. With this digital signature, the patent is considered official. Editing the document breaks the digital seal and the patent will no longer be an official document issued by the Patent Office.

Our new process will produce 2 PDFs, consisting of:

  1. the patent, sealed with a digital signature using Notarius software
  2. the cover page, description, claims and drawings

The following are images of a Canadian patent and the attached digital seal information.

Screenshot of a Canadian patent document Screenshot of the digital seal attached to a Canadian patent.

How do I download my patent documents?

You will receive a letter by email or regular mail advising that your patent has been issued.

The letter will include a link to our patent download page and a special code that will allow you to download your patent. The link on the letter is valid for 6 months. After 6 months, you will need to contact us to request your patent documents.

No special software will be required. A client will need a browser such as Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge, and software to read a pdf such as Adobe. Adobe Reader is a free download.

Can I forward the patent?

Yes, you can forward the patent without breaking the digital seal.

Can I correct an error on my patent?

You cannot correct an error on your patent by modifying the patent as this would break the seal and the patent would no longer be an official document.

If there is an error on the patent, you should submit a correction request under sections 107 or 109 of the Patent Rules. If all requirements are met within the time limits, then a certificate of correction will be provided.

The certificate of correction is provided as a paper document bearing the seal of the Patent Office.

Can I correct an error on the cover page?

The cover page is a snapshot of the information contained on our database. If there is an error in the patent reflected on the cover page, you should submit a correction request under sections 107 or 109 of the Patent Rules. If a certificate of correction is provided, a new cover page can be created to reflect that the correction has been made.

The cover page can be corrected as a courtesy if the cover page shows information that is not consistent with our database. For example, we can correct priority data if it is missing on the cover page but is present in our database.

Cover pages which contain minor typographical errors may not be corrected due to resource constraints.

What happens after re-examination of an issued patent?

Following the re-examination of a granted patent, a re-examination certificate may be issued.

When issued, the re-examination certificate is attached to the patent in the Office record. A copy of the certificate is sent by registered mail to the patentee.

What about reissued patents?

Reissued patents will be digitally signed and provided to you as a downloadable file.

You should never return the original patent to the Office for the purpose of reissue.

How do I get a certified copy of the patent?

Use our document order form to obtain a copy or a certified copy of any specific document or the complete file for Canadian patents open to public inspection. There is a fee for this service.

Where can I go to get publicly available patent documents?

If you want a copy of published documents associated with your patent, you can download them from the Canadian Patents Database.

We hope that this information provided in advance will be helpful for clients as they prepare for this change.

This information will be integrated into the CIPO website when electronic patent issuance launches.

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