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A patent is a right that is granted for any device, substance, method or process that is new, inventive and useful. A standard patent can last up to 20 years if all renewal fees are paid, while pharmaceutical patents can last up to 25 years if all renewal fees are paid. 

IP Australia recently announced that it is updating some of their Australian Patent Fees, commencing from 12am AEST, 1 October 2020. This article outlines the notable changes to these fees.  

Payments Made by Another Means

IP Australia is increasing fees for a number of payments that are made by “another means” such as by paper and fax, rather than the using the “preferred means”, being via online electronic payment. This is to deter people from making applications by “another means”.

Changes to Excess Claim Fees

Excess claim fees have increased. These are fees for each claim over and above 20 claims. Most Australian Patent Attorneys draft with a view that each claim over 20 incurs an additional fee. This is not always the case if your patent applications are being drafted overseas. Many overseas applications originate from countries where:

  • there are either no excess claim fees; or 
  • very small excess claim fees;

resulting in the application containing far more than 20 claims. As such, it is important to assess a patent application before acceptance and, if applicable, reduce the claim set to ensure that unnecessary excess claim fees are not incurred. 

Changes to Standard Renewal Fees

Standard patent renewal fees will be increased from 12am AEST, 1 October 2020. As such, if it is possible, it is beneficial to pay renewal fees before the 12am AEST, 1 October 2020 deadline to ensure you benefit from the current fees, rather than paying the increased fees. 

Key Fee Increases

A comprehensive list of all patent fee changes is available here.

Increased Fees for Excess Claims  

Fee Description  Old Fee (per claim)  New Fee (per claim) 
Standard Patent – Greater than 20 claims & equal to or less than 30 claims $110 $125
Standard Patent – Greater than 30 claims $110 $250

Increased Renewal Feels for Standard Patents Paid Online (Preferred Means) 

Fee Description  Old Fee   New Fee  
Standard Patent – 5th anniversary – Preferred Means $300 $315
Standard Patent – 6th anniversary – Preferred Means $300 $335
Standard Patent – 7th anniversary – Preferred Means $300 $360
Standard Patent – 8th anniversary – Preferred Means $300 $390
Standard Patent – 9th anniversary – Preferred Means $300 $425
Standard Patent – 10th anniversary – Preferred Means $550 $490
Standard Patent – 11th anniversary – Preferred Means $550 $585
Standard Patent – 12th anniversary – Preferred Means $550 $710
Standard Patent – 13th anniversary – Preferred Means $550 $865
Standard Patent – 14th anniversary – Preferred Means $550 $1,050
Standard Patent – 15th anniversary – Preferred Means $1,250 $1,280
Standard Patent – 16th anniversary – Preferred Means $1,250 $1,555
Standard Patent – 17th anniversary – Preferred Means $1,250 $1,875
Standard Patent – 18th anniversary – Preferred Means $1,250 $2,240
Standard Patent – 19th anniversary – Preferred Means $1,250 $2,650

Increased Renewal Fees for Pharmaceutical Patents Paid Online (Preferred Means)

Fee Description  Old Fee New Fee
Pharmaceutical Patent -20th anniversary – Preferred Means $2,550 $4,000
Pharmaceutical Patent -21st anniversary – Preferred Means $2,550 $5,000
Pharmaceutical Patent -22nd anniversary – Preferred Means $2,550 $6,000
Pharmaceutical Patent -23rd anniversary – Preferred Means $2,550 $7,000
Pharmaceutical Patent -24th anniversary – Preferred Means $2,550 $8,000

Reduction of Fee for Preliminary Search & Opinion (PSO) 

Fee Description  Old Fee  New Fee 
Patent voluntary Preliminary Search & Opinion (PSO) $2,200 $950

Please note: LegalVision always ensures filings and submissions are made by the “preferred means” via electronic online payment to IP Australia.  

Key Takeaways 

IP Australia are updating some of their patent fees commencing from 12am AEST, 1 October 2020. In particular: 

  • IP Australia appears to be actively discouraging patent filings by “another means” such as by paper and fax by increasing these filing fees, while the filing fees performed by the “preferred means”, being online electronic filings, remain the same. 
  • excess claim fees, being fees for each claim over 20 have increased; and 
  • patent renewal fees have increased for standard patents, including pharmaceutical patents. 

Take advantage of IP Australia’s current fees before the 12am AEST, 1 October 2020 deadline by ensuring that renewals are paid as soon as possible. In particular for pharmaceutical patents, where prices have been significantly raised for the 20th to 24th renewal anniversaries.

If you have any questions about IP Australia’s change to their Patent Fees, please contact LegalVision’s Patent Attorneys on 1300 544 755 or fill out the form on this page.

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