How much does it cost to obtain a patent for an invention?
August 31st, 2022
The costs of obtaining a patent in Canada are variable since they depend on a host of factors. However, there are a number of general guidelines that can be used to forecast the costs associated with your initial application as well as those that will be incurred over the life of a patent. The following article will try to inform you on the subject in order to allow you to anticipate these costs.
What to expect
A patent will provide its owner with enforceable monopolies in a particular area. It therefore goes without saying that patents can be expensive to acquire, even more so in the case of small start-up companies whose products have not yet been commercialized. However, obtaining a patent, from filing to grant, is usually a lengthy process. Costs therefore have the advantage of being able to be spread over time, which at least makes it possible to forecast expenditure more effectively. It is also possible to carry out some cost deferrals, particularly in the early stages of the process.
A well-written patent application
Drafting the patent application is a critical part of the patent acquisition process. A well-drafted patent may allow for a greater monopoly, but it will also improve the handling of objections by the patent office, once the application is under examination. This can reduce delays and, at the same time, the costs associated with it. It is therefore very important to prepare the request well at the start to reduce delays and the invoice. You can expect to spend between approximately $5,500 and $10,000 writing a new patent application in Canada and the United States, including filing fees. The total will vary depending on several factors, such as the complexity of the subject area, the completeness of the technical statement you provide to the patent agent, and the number of inventive concepts that must be considered in the application.
Once the application is drafted, it must be filed with a patent office such as the Canadian or US Patent Office. Once again here, the application fees vary depending on the country. Canada is usually affordable, and you should expect to pay $400 plus service fees for preparing and filing the application at the Canadian Intellectual Property Office. In the case of international patents (PCT), the costs can vary between $3,500 and $4,500.
You also need to plan for prosecution costs which are the downstream costs incurred when reviewing a patent application. Generally, this is the fee that is used to deal with any objections raised against the application by a patent office examiner. Lawsuit costs are more unpredictable than filing and drafting costs. The procedure for examining an application varies greatly. The costs will depend on your willingness to obtain broad patent protection. The range of costs can therefore extend from $1000 and more depending on the requirements of the examiner.
Maintaining the patent
Finally, an annual patent maintenance fee must be paid to maintain a patent in force. In Canada, you can expect to pay between $50 and $100 per year.
Do not hesitate to contact professionals to guide you through the steps leading to obtaining a patent. This will certainly save you unnecessary expenses and make the process easier and faster.