There are two types of patents granted in Australia: the standard patent and the innovative patent. Each follows a specific application process and requires ­­different levels of information.

It is important to know which category your invention falls into before making a Patent application.

What’s the difference?

Standard patents provide protection for up to 20 years and are applicable to inventions that are considered completely new, or ’inventive’. Standard patent applications require a significant amount of detail, underdo rigorous examination and are generally processed between 6 months to several years, depending on the circumstances.

Innovative patents do not require this ‘inventive’ quality. Instead, the invention or idea is an advancement to an existing technology or concept, or rather, an ‘innovation’.   Protection of innovative patents lasts for eight years and is suitable for inventions with a shorter market life. This is particularly relevant in areas such as computer science, where incremental developments take place all the time so that the long-term protection afforded by standard patents is not necessary.   Examination is not a requirement, and applications are typically processed between 1 and 6 months.

It is important to know which type of patent your invention is likely to be protected, as patent applications can be extremely costly and difficult to amend.

Is my invention inventive or innovative?

There is no universal test to determine whether an invention is likely to be approved for a standard or innovative patent. Prospective patentees are encouraged to seek professional assistance before embarking on such an endeavour.

Need help?

If you have any questions in relation to the above, please contact our team of Lawyers at The Quinn Group on (02) 9223 9166 or submit an online enquiry form today.