Patent Registration: Everything Inventors Must Know About the Inventive Step Requirement

The inventive step is a key eligibility requirement for inventions to be granted a patent registration in the UAE. As per Article 4 of Federal Law No. 31 For The Year 2006, a patent should be awarded to any new invention resulting from an innovative idea or an inventive step in all fields of technology. Furthermore, the law goes on to say that the inventive step should also be industrially applicable.

It means while applying for patent registration in the UAE, the examiner will test the inventive step to grant a patent for your invention. Your invention will be denied patent registration if you fail to demonstrate that your invention involves an inventive step. Inventors will generally be confused about the application of the inventive step, for which the assistance of patent agents in the UAE can be availed.

This article specifically tries to explain the concept of inventive steps, which will help you clear the patent registration process fast. Read on to know more:

What is an Inventive Step?

The inventive step has been made as a key eligibility requirement of patent registration in the UAE to determine whether the patent is for a new item or an obvious improvement on an existing one. Without the inventive step, an inventor could profit from an invention that he or she made by merely tweaking an existing invention.

The rationale behind the inventive step is to ensure that the invention should not be a mere collection and repackaging of existing ideas. In an invention, the inventive step must include technical advancement as compared to the existing knowledge and it should not be based on an abstract idea. Consult with patent agents in the UAE to derive more insights into the concept of the inventive step.

How to Assess the Inventive Step?

The system of patent registration in the UAE promotes innovation by granting exclusive rights to parties that disclose their inventions to the public. Inventions involving an inventive step make sure that there is a large enough improvement between the disclosed invention and existing technology to warrant the granting of the monopoly. In most territories, the inventive step is assessed by asking the question: “given the known prior art, will the proposed invention be obvious to a person with ordinary skills in the art?”

The person with ordinary skills in the field (also known as a skilled person) is a fictional person assumed to be existing in the field of the relevant technology. This person is assumed to have good skills in their job but lacks inventive capacity. If your invention is obvious to a skilled person in your field with no inventive capacity, then it means the claimed invention is not inventive or innovative.

A Simple Example to Assess Inventive Step

It may appear to be tough to demonstrate that your invention is not obvious to a person with ordinary skills in your field of knowledge. However, most patent offices follow certain procedures to test the inventive step or non-obviousness of an invention. A commonly followed test is as follows:  a car company applies for a patent for an invention composed of elements A and B. Both A & B are already known in the prior art. The patent examiner checks whether a person with ordinary skills in the specific field may find A+B to be already known after examining both A and B separately. If the answer is a ‘yes’, the invention lacks an inventive step and can’t be patented.

Differentiating Between Inventiveness and Novelty

The Patent Law makes it clear that an invention should also be novel to be granted patent registration in the UAE. However, most inventors fail to distinguish between the concepts of Novelty and Inventive Step. Unlike the inventive step, novelty requires your invention to be unknown to the public. The inventions should not be disclosed to the public before the filing date of the patent registration application.

You must ensure that the invention has not been published in a printed publication such as journals, newspapers, books, or any other magazine. The patent application will also be rejected owing to lack of novelty if it has been revealed or mentioned in a previously published patent application or issued Patent, which has been filed before the applicant filed for patent protection. This simply means you can’t apply for an invention that someone has already applied for patent protection.

Consult with the Best patent Agents in the UAE

Inventors must determine whether their inventions are eligible for patent registration in the UAE before drafting the claims. With the help of patent agents in the UAE, you can identify whether your invention meets critical criteria such as novelty, inventive step, and industrial applicability.

Leading patent agents in the UAE such as Jitendra Intellectual Property (JIP) can advise inventors about eligibility requirements. JIP has a team of highly experienced patent agents who can guide you through every step of patent registration in the UAE. We offer reliable patent services to make sure your inventions are protected in the UAE and other desired territories.

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