14 April, 2013

Raising the Bar

Legislation not endorsed by the TV show
Tomorrow, on the 15th of April, a new piece of legislation will come into force here in Australia regarding patents, trade marks and designs, although the main emphasis is on the former two. The Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Raising the Bar) Act 2012 will make some changes into existing laws, mainly amending the Patents Act 1990, the Trade Marks Act 1995 and the Designs Act 2003

As explained by IP Australia, the legislation makes some key changes, including:

- Raising the quality of granted patents by implementing changes to the key tests for patentability and more closely aligning these with international standards.
- Reducing delays in the resolution of opposition proceedings concerning patents and trade marks.
- Implementing changes to the regulation of patent and trade marks attorney professions and the increasing the ways in which they can operate.
- Implementing procedures for dealing with imports suspected of infringing IP rights and making it harder for importers of counterfeit goods to evade an IP right holder.
- Providing access to a simplified and more effective IP system.
The Act seems to amend some practical aspects, as well as attempt to speed up some of the processes, which no doubt are all welcome changes to all patent practitioners. However, as I lack the direct knowledge of patents in practice, whether these changes will actually impact the field will be left for someone to clarify for me.

A more comprehensive guide to the IP Reforms is provided for all to read, and gives more insight into the changes brought in via the Act.

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