Patent Cooperation treat is an international agreement through which the Patent Applicant can file for patent registration in multiple countries simultaneously. The PCT has two phases-
- International Phase
- National Phase
Once the application is filed in the international phase, the applicant can go for the national phase. In this the applicant can file for Patent registration in the specific countries. In India the application in national phase must be entered within the period of 31 months from the date of priority date.
After the application for registration is filed in India, then the application will be published within the period of 18 months from the date of filing of application. A request for early publication can also be filed along with the prescribed fees.
After the publication is done, the applicant has to file a request for the examination of the application. The request for examination can be filed prior to publication too; however, the examination will take place only after the stage of publication.
Once the request for examination is filed, then the application will be forwarded to the examiner within the period of 1 month from filing the request or from the date of publication, whichever is later. After receiving the application, the examiner examines the application and prepares a report within the period of 3 months.
After preparing the report the examiner forwards the report to the controller who forwards it to the applicant. The report is known as First Examination Report. The FIR is forwarded to the applicant within the period of 6 months from the date of filing of the request for examination or from the date of publication, whichever is earlier.
After receiving the First Examination Report the applicant has to comply with the requirements mentioned in the report within the period of 12 months, otherwise the application will be considered abandoned.
After all the requirements mentioned in the First Examination Report are complied with, the application gets published in the Patent Journal. If within the period of 4 months no one opposes the application then the patent will be issued to the applicant.