Patents and utility models protect technical inventions. The requirements to patents/ utility models are novelty, level of invention/ inventive step (non-obviousness) and industrial applicability. Before a patent is granted it has to be examined. The requirements to a utility model are similar to the requirements posed to a patent. However, a utility model is not examined in order to be granted.
LHIP offers different kinds of patent research.
LHIP searches prior patents and utility models internationally to find out if a technology is new. This is a prerequisite for effective (legally binding) patents and utility models.
Novelty research can be performed at different times during a development process of an innovation. Often, prior patents or utility models limit the freedom to develop the innovation. Non-observance of valid industrial property rights can lead to infringement and be costly. Thus, research should be carried out early during the development process to avoid proceeding technical solutions protected by prior art or else to find licensing solutions for protected technologies.
At the latest, novelty research should be done before filing a patent or utility model.INFRINGEMENT AND NULLITY RESEARCH
Patents or utility models limiting a company´s freedom to develop, can – under certain circumstances – be “brought down”. For this purpose, LHIP searches industrial property rights proving that the invention protected in a certain patent or utility model was not new at the time its application had been filed. Attacking utility models is often particularly promising, taking into account that in most countries they are granted without examination.
Research strategies for LHIP novelty, infringement and nullity research are always agreed upon ex ante with our customers. Basically, both classifications like e.g. the International Patent Classification (IPC) or the Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) can be searched or else also key-word text searches are possible. Normally, LHIP prefers IPC or CPC searches, as key-words in general are random searches only. Please see also the technologies covered in our research in ABOUT/COMPANY.
LHIP covers patents in more than 100 offices including patents filed at the international offices European Patent Office (EPO) und World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).APPLICANT AND INVENTOR RESEARCH
Often, only certain applicants´ or inventors´ technologies are of interest. Applicant or inventor search can deliver good results with e.g. worthy information on competing company´s developments.
If required, information on applicants can be completed with information on corporate linkages (as far as available).
Please feel welcome to contact us for more detailed information on our services.