Patent Rights

Freedom to Operate

“Freedom to operate”, abbreviated “FTO”, is usually used to mean determining whether a particular action, such as testing or commercialising a product, can be done without infringing valid intellectual property rights of others. Since IP rights are specific to different…

In-Force Duration

1. Since the Uruguay Round Agreements in 1994, many countries have enacted laws providing that the enforceable term of patent protection begins on the date of grant of a utility patent (durations may differ for other types of patents such as industrial design…

Filing Dates vs Priority Dates

The terms filing date and priority date are often used interchangeably, but they are not the same. The filing date is the date when a patent application is first filed at a patent office. The priority date, sometimes called the “effective filing date”, is the date used…