International Search

The international search is a search performed by an International Searching Authority (ISA) following the filing of an international patent application with a Receiving Office (RO) to find the most relevant prior art documents regarding the claimed subject matter in the application.

The Objective

The objective of the international search is to discover the prior art which is relevant for the purpose of determining whether, and if so to what extent, the claimed invention to which the international application relates is or is not novel and does or does not involve an inventive step. Based on above the International Searching Authority (ISA) establishes either an International Search Report (ISR) or a Declaration of non-establishment of ISR.

At the same time as establishing the International Search Report, a written opinion (WO) is also to be established defining as to whether the claimed invention appears to be novel, involve an inventive step, be industrially applicable and meet with the other requirements of the Treaty which are checked by the ISA.

The Process

The first step of the procedure consists in filing an international (patent) application with a Receiving Office (RO). In the application the applicant shall choose which International Search Authority shall perform the international search. For applicants from Denmark, Norway, Iceland and Sweden the applicants can choose between Nordic Patent Institute, European Patent Office or the Swedish Patent Office.

The international search is carried out in accordance with the International Search and Preliminary Examination Guidelines.

Deadlines and Delivery

Nordic Patent Institute will issue an international search report within 15 months from the priority date or 2 months from receiving the search copy of the international application (whichever expires later) unless

  • the application covers more than one invention
  • of non compliance with time limits concerned with RO or ISA invitations (payment of fees, translations, corrections of obvious errors or sequence listings issues, etc.)

ISR/WO in international applications filed without priority are delivered within 7 months from filing or 2 months from receiving the search copy of the international application (whichever expires later) as a standard unless

  • the application covers more than one invention
  • of non-compliance with time limits concerned with RO or ISA invitations (payment of fees, translations, corrections of obvious errors or sequence listings issues, etc.)

Fees

All PCT fees which are due at filing of an international application shall be paid to the Receiving Office of the individual National Patent Office. Please click here to see the current schedule fees and a fee calculator.

Filing

For online filing of PCT applications click here.

 


  • Did you know that by using the Global PPH system, a positive PCT report from Nordic Patent Institute can give you the possibility of fast-tracking a corresponding application at 16 other patent offices?
  • Did you know that for a small additional fee, we can add a claim chart to your validity search report, conveniently mapping the relevant references against the claim features for clarity purposes?
  • Did you know that both the Norwegian and the Danish Patent Offices, which perform all searches for Nordic Patent Institute, have over 100 years' experience with patent searching?
  • Did you know that when carrying out their PCT searches, our examiners always search Nordic (Norwegian, Danish, Swedish and Finnish) material?
  • Did you know that in validity searches performed by Nordic Patent Institute, references of particular relevance or obviousness-type references were found in about 70 % of the tasks given to us?
  • Did you know that we have started PCT-PPH pilot projects with USPTO and JPO allowing applicants who have chosen Nordic Patent Institute to request a fast-track examination at the USPTO and JPO?
  • Did you know that in certain cases Nordic Patent Institute will refund up to 50 % of the PCT search fee paid by the applicant, if the results from an earlier search can be used to reduce the extent of the ISA search?
  • Did you know that all our examiners are educated at an MSc level or higher, that they have extensive patent examiner training and can search in minimum English, French, German, and the Scandinavian languages?
  • Did you know that when carrying out the prior art searches our examiners have access to more than 850 databases?
  • Did you know that the combined languages skills of our examiners bring our searching fluency to over 30 languages?
  • Did you know that all the prior art searches done by Nordic Patent Institute are performed by the highly qualified and experienced PCT examiners at the Danish and Norwegian Patent Offices?
  • Did you know that our examiners spend about 60 % of their time examining patent applications and 40 % of their time providing prior art searches and assessments to businesses and IP law firms?
  • Did you know that when it comes to the timeliness of ISAs in transmitting ISRs, Nordic Patent Institute has from the beginning been among the best ISAs?
  • Did you know that Swedish nationals and residents can use Nordic Patent Institute as an ISA and/or IPEA when filing a PCT application?