• Inventions

    The most well known type of a patent is an Invention. If your product is totally new and contains an inventive step, this is for you. 
    Learn about Inventions

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  • Utility Models

    A utility model is a type of patent, where generally speaking you are improving on an existing patent. Not ever country offers utility models, but many do. It can be an easier option than to apply for an invention (where relevant).
    Learn about Utility Models patents
  • Process Patents

    A process patent is patenting a new type of behavior process, such as Amazon's "1-click" checkout process or a novel manufacturing method.
    Learn about Process patents
  • Biological or Chemical patents

    A Biological patent is a type of utility patent, where the inventor claims rights over a new organism or plant. 
    Learn about Bio/Chem patents
  • Industrial Designs

    An Industrial Design in the intellectual property lingo means a registration of a unique design. Often a product design, but can be other things as well. 
    Learn about Industrial Design patents

About patents

A patent is an exclusive right granted for something new which is a product or a process that provides new ways of doing something, or that offers a new technical solution to a problem.

Patents can be given for inventions in any field of technology, from an everyday kitchen utensil to a nanotechnology chip. An invention can be a product – such as a chemical compound, or a process, for example – or a process for producing a specific chemical compound. Many products in fact contain a number of inventions. For example, a laptop computer can involve hundreds of inventions, working together.
Patented inventions have actually been present in every aspect of human life, from electric lighting (patents held by Edison and Swan) and plastic (patents held by Baekeland), to ballpoint pens (patents held by Biro), and microprocessors (patents held by Intel, for example).

But why do we need to register these inventions? Why have a patent? Well, patents provide incentives and protection by offering recognition to the creators for their creativity and the possibility of material reward for their inventions. At the same time, the obligatory publication of patents and patent applications facilitates the mutually-beneficial spread of new knowledge and accelerates innovation activities.

Once knowledge is publicly available it can be used simultaneously by an unlimited number of persons. While this is, without doubt, perfectly acceptable for public information, it causes a dilemma for the commercialization of technical knowledge. In the absence of protection of such knowledge, anyone could easily use technical knowledge embedded in inventions without any recognition of the creativity of the inventor or contribution to the investments made by the inventor. As a consequence, inventors would be discouraged to bring new inventions to the market, and tend to keep their commercially valuable inventions secret. A patent system intends to correct such under-provision of innovative activities by providing innovators with limited exclusive rights, therefore giving them the possibility to receive appropriate returns on their innovative activities.

In a wider sense, the public disclosure of the technical knowledge in the patent, and the exclusive right granted by the patent, provide incentives for competitors to search for alternative solutions and to “invent around” the first invention. These incentives and the dissemination of knowledge about new inventions encourage further innovation, which assures that the quality of human life and the well-being of society is continuously enhanced.

The first step in securing a patent is the filing of a patent application:

In these applications you must describe the title of the invention, as well as provide an indication of its technical field. You must also include the background and a description of the invention, in clear language and enough detail that a person with an average understanding of the field could use or reproduce the invention. Such descriptions are usually accompanied by visual materials such as drawings, plans, or diagrams to better describe the invention and an abstract, which contains a brief summary of the invention. You must also clearly and concisely define the matter for which patent protection is sought in the “claims” part of the patent application.

What kind of protection does a patent offer?

In principle, the patent owner has the exclusive right to prevent or stop others from commercially exploiting the patented invention. In other words, patent protection means that the invention cannot be commercially made, used, distributed, imported or sold by others without the patent owner's consent.

Is a patent valid in every country?

Patents are territorial rights. In general, the exclusive rights are only applicable in the country or region in which a patent has been filed and granted, in accordance with the law of that country or region. Brealant files patents in many countries and assists clients in choosing which countries are suitable and cost effective. Once you release you invention to the world, you can no longer patent it in another country. 

How long does a patent last?

The protection is granted for a limited period, generally 20 years from the filing date of the application.

We are ready to help you protect your business. If you need more information, feel free to ask us any questions.

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