The following are the critical points in relation to patents
- Do not disclose an invention to anyone, except under a written Confidentiality Agreement
- Discuss the details only with a patent attorney.
- If the concept is considered to have patent potential, a detailed specification will be drawn up and filed immediately.
- There are then 12 months, before the final filing, in which to amend any details of the invention, decide in which countries to file and arrange the necessary finance
- In each country the priority date will be that of the first filing date in Ireland.
- It is not possible to subsequently file a valid application in any other country and enjoy the priority date.
- In countries where a patent does not exist, the product can be legally copied and marketed by others.
- The life of a patent is usually 20 years. A short term (10 year) patent can be obtained in approximately 6 months.
- An inventor may (under certain circumstances) receive royalties, free of Irish income tax, during the life of a patent.
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