Posted in Finance, Accounting and Economics Terms, Total Reads: 1058

Definition: Patent

A patent is exclusive rights granted to a person for a new and valuable invention, for a limited period of time.

As explained in the India Patents Act (1970), a patent can be defined - as a monopoly right granted to someone who has invented a new and useful article, or an improvement of existing article, or a new process of making an article. It consists of an exclusive right to manufacture the new invented article or manufacture an article according to the invented process for a limited period. The basic requirement for a patent remains the same across countries i.e. a new (something not obvious) and useful invention. The Patent gives the right to take legal action against those using, importing or selling invention without permission. For obtaining a Patent a request must be made to the country’s patent office first.

Patents pertain to the particular country where it has been awarded and there is no such thing as a ‘World Patent’ application. This also includes different list of ‘non-patentable’ items for different countries. A point to be noted here is that, laws in all countries that belong to WTO (World Trade Organization) require permission from the patent holder to use the patented technology or import products produced by the patented technology. For eg. laws have been imposed in Europe to prevent import of Soybeans grown in Argentina as they use processes in producing the seeds which are under patent in Europe though not patented in Argentina.

For example: 

Apple has its vital iPhone and iPad features patented and in 2013 Samsung was asked to pay Apple for infringing its patents including one that allows users to "pinch and zoom" on smartphone and tablet screens.

Hence, this concludes the definition of Patent along with its overview.


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