Singapore – from filing to grant

FPA has an office in Singapore, FPA Patent Attorneys Asia Pte Ltd, led by Desmond Tan registered patent attorney in Singapore, and President of the Association of Singapore Patent Attorneys. Our patent attorneys are registered to practise before the Australian and New Zealand Patent Offices and they instruct patent attorneys registered before the Intellectual Property office of Singapore (IPOS) and on all aspects of Singapore patent prosecution.

Singapore Patent Office (IPOS)

The government agency responsible for grant of patent rights in Singapore is the IPOS, which can be accessed at the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore

Key prosecution events


Key prosecution event
Deadline
Paris Convention Filing:
12 months from earliest claimed priority
PCT National Phase Entry: 
30 months from earliest claimed priority
Local search and examination: 36 months from earliest claimed priority
Supplementary examination: 54 months from earliest claimed priority
Divisional application:
before payment of the grant fee to request issuance of the grant


National phase entry

A national phase application must be filed by 30 months from the earliest claimed priority date. Upon payment of a fee, an extension of time of 18 months can be obtained for entering the national phase. View filing requirements for a Singapore National phase application.

Convention applications

Singapore is party to the Paris Convention. A Convention application must be validly filed by 12 months from filing the earliest priority application. View filing requirements for a Singapore Convention application.

Utility patents and 2nd tier protection

Not available.

Examination, divisional applications and acceptance

i) Examination 

For practical purposes, there are two types of examination available, namely local search and examination, and supplementary examination.

Local search and examination is conducted by the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS). The examiner conducts a search in respect of each of the claims of the application to determine patentability.

For Singapore national phase applications, local search and examination is to be requested within 36 months of the earliest priority date of the application.

 The grounds of examination will include an assessment of whether:

  • the claims are novel and inventive;
  • the claims are supported by the description;
  • the claimed invention is capable of industrial applicability (methods of medical treatment are not taken to be capable of industrial application);
  • the application includes added subject matter;
  • the invention as claimed is contrary to morality;
  • there is double patenting; and
  • each of the claims relates to a claim that has been searched.

Supplementary examination occurs where the applicant seeks to rely on a PCT application with a clear IPRP or the acceptance/allowance or grant of a corresponding application in Australia, Canada (for English applications), Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, the UK, the USA, and at the EPO (for English applications).

Supplementary examination must be requested within 54 months of the priority date of the application.

Under supplementary examination, the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) conducts examination to ensure the application conforms to Singaporean patent practice. Supplementary examination considers whether: 

  • the claims being examined are “related” to claims in the corresponding application on which supplementary examination is based;
  • the claims are supported by the description;
  • the invention as claimed is contrary to morality;
  • the invention as claimed relates to a method of medical treatment;
  • double patenting; and
  • the application includes added subject matter.

 Examination flowchart: 

 

 ii) Divisional applications

 An applicant may file divisional applications voluntarily, or because of the examiner's objection to the unity of invention raised during examination, provided that the divisional applications are filed any time before the parent application has been refused, withdrawn or become abandoned, or before the conditions for grant of a patent on the parent application are satisfied.

 iii) Acceptance

 Once the examiner is satisfied that the patent application has met all examination requirements, a Notice of Eligibility will issue, and the applicant has 2 months to pay the grant fees.

 Post grant re-examination procedures apply. There is no opposition procedure.

Micro-organisms

 Singapore is a party to the Budapest Treaty.

 There is an express statutory exclusion to patent eligibility of isolated nucleic acid molecules, although their use may be patentable.

Renewals

 For details on the renewal requirements in Singapore, view South East Asia – Renewal Requirements.

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