Writing a patent application (page 1 of 8)
From: Canadian Intellectual Property Office
Do it right the first time!
The Patent Act sets out the rules for the proper structure and format of your patent application. If you do not follow these rules, your application will be rejected and you will lose your filing date.
It is best that you do it right the first time by writing as complete an application as possible. See a complete list of the elements that you need to include in your patent application.
This part of the tutorial is meant to be a general guide. Writing a proper application takes a lot of practice and good writing skills. Patent agents are trained to do this; it could be a good idea to hire an agent so that you get the best protection possible for your invention.
Make it clear
The application you write will eventually become your patent. It is a legal document that you must write clearly, precisely and in a certain format. Patent applications are written this way to make your invention and claims clear to the examiner and anyone else reading your patent.
Our lesson on writing a patent application begins the way most people start to write their applications: with the drawings. Then we teach you about the application’s description, claims, petition and the abstract. We recommend that you view the topics in this order. But first, here are a few questions.
Before you start writing
Although you may be eager to begin writing your application, there are a few questions you should ask yourself before you start:
- Is my application for something that is new, useful and inventive?
- Have I done a preliminary search and do I think I have a good chance of getting a patent for my invention?
- Do I have a sense of the time and money involved in getting a patent?
Once you are satisfied with your answers, you can start putting together the materials you need. We have written a checklist to help you get started.
Here is a checklist to help you gather your information:
- A Guide to Patents
- Manual of Patent Office Practice (MOPOP)
- Documentation associated with the development of your invention
- Results of your preliminary search
- Results of laboratory tests
- Technical drawings and sketches
- Examples of similar patents
- Background information that will help explain your invention
- Names and addresses of applicants and inventors
- List of countries in which you want to apply
Not all of these suggestions may be important for your application.
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