With over 50 years of experience in the field of intellectual property law in Canada, we understand how important a strong intellectual property portfolio can be to a private inventor and an established business.
Our patent professionals all have engineering or graduate degrees in science, which allows us to understand and communicate effectively with the inventor across a wide range of scientific disciplines.
Our trademark department has been representing private clients and large multinational corporations at the Canadian Intellectual Property Office and in the Federal Court for several decades.
The size of our staff allows for personal attention to be given to every client, which is often overlooked by our competition.
I think I have developed an invention, what should I do? Canada has a first to file patent system, which means the first person to file a patent application for an invention in Canada is the person entitled to be granted a patent for that invention. Therefore, it is highly recommended for an inventor to refrain from disclosing the details of their invention to any person before a patent application is filed on their behalf.
It is also highly recommended that the inventor consider at this point consulting with a qualified patent agent with respect to their invention. A qualified patent agent will be best able to advise the inventor as to his or her options at this point. Preferably, not but necessarily, a patentability search or opinion is recommended to determine if a valid patent is likely to be obtained for the invention. In order to obtain a valid patent, the invention must be novel, non-obvious and useful. In other words, the invention must not have been publicly disclosed anywhere in the world prior to the filing of an application for the invention. Also, the invention must not be obvious, which typically means that a person of ordinary skill in the art without a scintilla of inventive spirit would have developed the inventive article at the time of filing a patent application. Finally, the invention must be useful, which basically means that the invention must work. A patentability search will reveal those patent documents, commonly referred to as prior art, which relates to the invention and an opinion on the probability of obtaining patent protection is rendered based on what is taught in the prior art.
If the prior art does not teach or suggest of the invention, a patent application should be prepared by a qualified patent agent and without delay filed at the Canadian Intellectual Property Office in order to secure the earliest possible filing date. Alternatively, an application may be filed in the United States in the first instance.
What does a patent application consist of?
A properly drafted Canadian patent application will typically contain the following:
- an abstract, which will briefly describe the invention;
- background information describing the problem being solved by the invention and solutions to the problem previously contemplated by others;
- a summary of the invention which describes generally the invention and the elements required to have it work;
- a detailed description of the invention or a description of the best mode of operation for the invention;
- a set of claims defining those aspects of the invention in which an exclusive property or privilege is claimed; and
- a set of drawings which illustrate the invention, if the invention lends itself to illustration.
What will I do with my patent?
An inventor can work their patent in several different ways. For example, the inventor may wish to manufacture and sell the product themselves or with business partners. It is also possible to license the technology to others for their use of the product. Generally, these licenses can be exclusive or non-exclusive. The inventor may also elect to assign their rights to another entity in return for reasonable compensation.
How do I get started?
If you wish to receive more information on the different aspects of intellectual property law as well as a series of questions in which we will require answers to in order to best advise you of your options in protecting your development, please fill out the following form.