Amendments to the Singapore Patents Act and Rules are due to come into force on 14 February 2014. The amendments will affect all Singapore patent applications lodged in Singapore on or after this date.
For example, the new law will apply to: any Singapore national phase application which enters the national phase in Singapore on or after the 14 February 2014 regardless of the international filing date; any Singapore patent application filed in Singapore on or after the 14 February 2014; and, any Singapore divisional patent application filed in Singapore on or after the 14 February 2014 even if entitled to an earlier filing date by virtue of its parent application.
The amendments include some significant changes to both the requirements and procedures for obtaining a Singapore patent. The most significant of these changes is that the current ‘self-assessment’ system will change to a ‘positive-grant’ system.
The following table shows the differences between the current Act and the new Act that will take effect from 14th February 2014.
Proposed New law
|Self assessment system||Positive-grant system|
|Two- track prosecution system||Single track prosecution system|
|Relaxed Restoration provisions||Strict Restoration provisions|
|Post-grant search & examination||No post-grant search & examination|
|Strict extension of time provisions||Relaxed extension of time provisions|
|Relaxed Surrendering provisions||Strict surrendering provisions.|
By Akshatha Karthik