When you start with product development, it is important to examine in advance the technology already known in the relevant technical area, what are the technical problems in the area and how these problems have been addressed. Well-known solutions can help:
- find ideas for developing a new product;
- adapt to a new competitive situation;
- provide a solution to a problem in product development.
Patent databases are significant sources for finding technical information.
The Estonian Patent Office offers a patent search subject to a fee. All fields of engineering are covered, searches are performed in both Estonian and English.
It is worth noting that the search you order does not have a direct link to the later procedure. It is just source information to decide in what form and wording the patent application or utility model application should be formulated in order to obtain protection.
Basic search types
Novelty and inventive step search– this type of search is necessary to find out if an idea or invention is new and whether it has an inventive step. The aim of the search is to find possible obstacles for patenting. The search report will include publications with identical or similar technical solutions found during the search. The cited patent documents are usually available free of charge in patent databases, such as Espacenet, but it is also possible to order copies of all documents from us, or only copies of non-patent-documents.
In addition to the search, comments about the cited documents can be ordered. Comments indicate common characteristics of the solution presented in the documents cited in the search report, and the invention, and, if possible, the inventive step is explained using the problem/solution approach.
State of the art search – this type of search is suitable for research in the field of technology if the invention is still at the level of an idea. The state of the art search report shall include documents from all over the world with already known solutions from a specific technical area. The report can also include comments about key issues in publications and their solutions.
Freedom to operate search – this type of search is necessary before the commercial use of the product or further development of the idea. If you intend to introduce a product or method commercially, or produce or import a product, you should make sure in advance that you do not infringe someone's valid patent or utility model. A freedom to operate search will reduce the risk of infringement.
A freedom to operate search can be ordered for Estonia, Europe and the US. Search for Europe is performed in the 38 member states that have joined the European Patent Organisation. In the report, we note the patents, utility models and patent applications in the country of interest found during the search, but we do not take a position on the risk of infringement. The documents retrieved will help you identify the potential risk of infringement yourself.
Patent search fees
|1. Conducting a patent search (minimum fee for 1 hour)||40 EUR / an hour|
|2. Compilation of a search report||30 EUR / a search|
|3. Compilation of the commentary of the search report (minimum fee for 1 hour)||55 EUR / an hour|
|4. Copies of the retrieved documents||0,25 EUR / a sheet|
|5. General expenses||10%|