The Eurasian Patent System allows applicants to take advantage of a Eurasian regional patent that is valid not only in Russia, but also in the other seven member countries of the Eurasian Patent Convention (EAPC): Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan.
Patent applications are filed with the Eurasian Patent Office (EAPO, located in Moscow) in a single language (Russian) and are processed by the EAPO until granted. The patent issued is immediately valid in all the member states. Although the Eurasian official fees are considerably higher than those charged by any national Patent Office, the processing of one Eurasian application is usually more cost-effective than separate prosecution of two or three national applications.
The Eurasian Patent System is traditionally popular among foreign applicants who represent a vast majority of the filers (despite the large discounts on official fees offered to applicants from member states). Accordingly, most Eurasian patent applications are regional stages of PCT applications, or else they claim priority from earlier foreign applications.
Initial (priority) applications are filed with the Eurasian Patent Office through the national Patent Offices in accordance with national first filing requirements. (Please refer to the First filing Requirement/Foreign Filing License section below.)
The way the Eurasian Patent Convention works is very similar to the European Patent Convention; it is even more convenient and applicant-friendly in some respects: for example, there is no special validation procedure and the Eurasian patent holder chooses the countries where the patent should be maintained by merely paying the respective annuities. All the annuities are paid directly to the Eurasian Patent Office.
Our Eurasian patent attorneys will help you to file your patent applications with the Eurasian Patent Office for any industry sector and will professionally guide you through each step of the examination.
First Filing Requirement (Foreign Filing License)
The term “foreign filing license” is not directly mentioned in Russian IP legislation. At the same time, Russian regulations contain provisions similar to those set forth in countries that oblige national applicants to receive special permission before filing patent applications abroad.
In case the invention has been developed in the Russian Federation, the applicant is required by Russian law to file their first application in Russia (direct national filing or international application filed with the RUPTO as the International receiving office).
Any subsequent application can only be filed abroad after a six-month check performed by the Russian Patent Office. The check is meant to reveal state secrets the invention may eventually contain. Rospatent does not issue any special permission to file foreign applications (as compared to the US foreign filing license, when PTO issues a corresponding notification). The lapse of the said six-month term automatically allows the applicant to file subsequent applications with foreign Patent offices. The term may be reduced by filing a request explaining that the application materials do not contain state secrets. Reduction of the term lies then within Rospatent’s discretion. It may normally be reduced to 3-4 months.
If, in breach of said rule, the applicant files the patent application with a foreign Patent office, Russian law stipulates administrative liability (monetary penalties). At the same time, if, after an unauthorized foreign filing, a state secret is revealed in the invention, both the applicant and the inventor become criminally liable.
We will be happy to provide more information and perform an analysis of a specific situation involving the first filing requirement.
Can Russian inventors file patent applications in foreign PTOs to receive patents for their inventions in foreign countries?
Patent applications for inventions created in the Russian Federation can be filed in a foreign country (to an international patent organization) upon expiration of six months from the date of filing the respective application with the RUPTO, provided that within the indicated term the applicant is not notified of the fact that the application contains state secret data. Application for invention or utility model can be filed before the expiration of the above mentioned six month period in case the clearance for state secret data has been performed at the applicant's request.
What happens if the applicant does not meet the time limit for entering the national phase in Russia?
The rights of the applicant with respect to an international application in Russia can be reinstated within 12 months upon the applicant’s request. The request should state the reasons for not meeting the time limit. The official fee charged for reinstatement amounts to 5,000 RUB.
Do foreign applicants need a Russian or Eurasian attorney?
It is mandatory according to Russian legislation that foreign applicants be represented before Rospatent (RUPTO) by a Russian patent attorney who is listed in the Russian Register of Patent Attorneys.
Similarly, for prosecution of a Eurasian patent application, applicants having no residence or principal place of business in the territory of any State party to the Eurasian Convention are required to be represented by a registered Eurasian patent attorney.
To be successfully guided through the intricacies of national and regional regulation and to ensure the widest possible scope of protection, it is important for the applicant to retain an experienced patent attorney skilled in the specific technical field.
How is it possible to speed up prosecution of patent applications in Russia?
One of the ways to accelerate patent prosecution in Russia is the Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH). Currently, the Russian Patent and Trademark Office (RUPTO) has pilot PPH programs with the European Patent Office and the Patent Offices of Japan, US, Korea, Finland, Spain, Denmark, China and Portugal. According to the signed agreements, RUPTO’s patent examiners will take into consideration PCT and national/regional work products. Filing the PPH request, the client may count on receiving fewer office actions and consequently decreasing the term of prosecution.
Another way is the RUPTO’s paid service allowing the applicant to receive the search report within 10 working days. The search results allow decreasing to two months the term of issuing the first office action or the decision of grant. The official tariff charged for this service amounts to 94,400 RUR.
Can I get a patent term extension in Russia?
In case more than five years have lapsed between the filing date of an application for an invention related to a medication, pesticide or agrochemical product (if its use requires authorization) and the date of the first marketing authorisation, the term of the patent shall be extended upon request of the patent owner by the Russian Patent and Trademark office. The term shall be extended for the period computed from the filing date of the patent to the date of the first authorisation minus five years, with the proviso that the term of the patent may not be extended for a period exceeding five years.
The request for extension of the term should be submitted by the patent owner during the term of the patent’s validity within six months after obtaining the first authorisation or of the patent grant, whichever comes last.
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