The Patent (Amendment) Rules, 2016 have been notified with effect from May 16, 2016. The salient feature of the Rules are as follows:
1. It is now possible to delete the no. of claims while filing the PCT national phase application in India (as this amendment only allows deletion of claims, amendment of claims can only be made after filing of national phase)
2. Timeline for putting application in order for acceptance has been reduced to 6 months from 12 months earlier. A further extension of 3 months would be made available on filing of request for extension.
3. Where India has been indicated as ISA or IPEA, it is possible to file expedited request for examination on Form 18A. The fee for expedited request for examination is INR 8000 for natural person and start ups, INR 25000 for Small entity, and INR 60000 for other entity, and this request can only be filed online.
4. Also in case of start up a request for expedited examination could be filed on Form 18A and fee payable shall be INR 8000.
5. It is possible to turn the earlier request for examination to expedited request, by paying the balance requisite fee (exceeding the normal examination fee).
6. However, Application is not yet published or not request for early publication is filed, the request for expedited examination shall be filed along with request for publication.
7. An obligation has been cast on the Controller to Dispose off the Application within 3 months of filing of last response or final date of acceptance, whichever earlier.
8. Startups shall be allowed to pay the discounted official fee as payable by natural person, where the invention is filed by startup alone or with natural person/s.
9. A new Form 1 has been issued and it shall bear a unique Identification no. allotted to Applicant (as is being done in case of Trademarks).
10. For claiming startup status, a duly notartised affidavit may be required for non-Indian entity.