43 Countries Agree To Streamline Patent Filing

Law360, New York (September 26, 2006, 12:00 AM EDT) -- Moving a step closer to the global harmonization of patent-filing procedures, the U.S., Japan and 41 other countries have agreed on a standard system for the patent approval process.

The agreement is not yet final, but the countries have “formed a working group to try to develop an agreement on selected issues, namely, the definition of prior art, aspects of an international grace period, and provisions concerning novelty and inventive step (or obviousness, in U.S. practice),” according to a U.S. Patent and Trademark office spokesperson....
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