Validity of the patent and patent application

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A patent shall be valid for 20 years from the filing date of the patent application. Supplementary protection of medicinal products and plant protection products shall be valid up to five years from the expiry of the basic patent. To maintain a patent application and patent, a state fee shall be paid for each year of validity. The filing date of a patent application is deemed to be the date of the beginning of a year of validity (Patents Act § 37).

The state fee is deemed to be paid when the information concerning the payment of the fee has been submitted to the Estonian Patent Office. If the fee for the year of validity is not paid in due time or the fee has been transferred to the account of the Ministry of Finance on time, but the information concerning the paid fee has not been filed with the Patent Office, the patent becomes invalid.

The state fee for a year of validity shall be paid on the due date of payment or within six months before the due date of payment. The last day of the calendar month during which the year of validity begins (e.g. if the patent application was filed on 10 January 2010, the due date of payment for the 3rd year of validity would be 31 January 2012) is deemed to be the due date of payment (Patents Act § 42  Subsection 1).

Only the state fees for the first, second and third year of validity shall be paid at the same time on the due date of payment for the third year of validity or within six months before the due date of payment of the state fee for the third year of validity (Patents Act § 42 Subsection 2). The fee for each year of validity should be paid every year in the following years.

The state fee for a year of validity may be paid within six months after the due date of payment if a supplementary fee of 10%  from the fee of the given  year of validity is paid (Patents Act § 42 Subsection 3).

The due date of payment of the state fee for the first year of validity of supplementary protection is deemed to be the last day of the calendar during which the term of validity of the basic patent ends. The state fee may be paid within six months before the due date of payment (Patents Act § 42 Subsection 6).

The state fee for each following year of validity of supplementary protection and for extension of the period of validity of supplementary protection for medicinal products for paediatric use shall be paid on due date of payment which is the last day of the calendar month during which the year of validity of supplementary protection begins or, in the case of medicinal products for paediatric use, the last day of the calendar month during which the extended period of validity of supplementary protection begins. The mentioned fees may be paid within six months before the due date of payment (Patents Act § 42 Subsection 7). The state fee for a year of validity of supplementary protection may be paid within six months after the due date of payment has passed, if a supplementary state fee is also paid (Patents Act § 42 Subsection 8). But this is not valid for the extension of the validity of supplementary protection.

If failure to pay the state fee occurred due to force majeure or some other impediment beyond the control of the applicant, proprietor of the patent, proprietor of supplementary protection or their representative, the Estonian Patent Office can resume the processing of a patent application or the validity of protection. Therefore the applicant, proprietor of the patent or proprietor of supplementary protection has to file a relevant request with the Patent Office the within two months after the impediment ceases to exist. Besides that the existence of force majeure or some other impediment should be proved, the state fee for the year of validity or the resumption of the validity of protection should be paid. The resumption request can be filed within one year from the due date prescribed in the Patents Act § 42. In case a supplementary state fee is paid, the above mentioned request can be submitted after the end of the due date prescribed in subsections (3), (8) or (10) of this section.

Last modified 22.02.2017