September 8, 2011
Invalidity Search: Way to healthy R&D and genuine competition
A patent invalidity search is a search done to invalidate the claims of the issued patent. Mostly competitors of a particular field perform this search in order to invalidate the patent, which has been granted/issued to its competitor. The claim may relate to a product or process or both. As the technology and competitions are advancing, this search is beneficial to the company/organization. It’s simply because of the reason that no company/organization wants its competitor to grow by taking the undue advantage of circumstances. This is done by uncovering appropriate prior art and best mode, which at most of the times are not mentioned by the applicant. On a practical note, our patent office is burdened with a good number of applications for patent, having inadequate resources, limited time and limited number of persons working with the department, this creates a scenario where Patent Office allows the claims due to error by overlooking the best prior art. In such instances, the invalidity search conducted by the parties for the patent in question will uncover better prior art than the prior art of record uncovered earlier by the patent examiner. By help of this invalidity search, the company/organization is benefited as it can stop its competitors to get undue benefit. Also, it paves the way for a system where only genuine Patents are granted, which further gives rise to better R&D as well as healthy and genuine competition.