The Law Firm of
Louis Ventre, Jr.
Registered Patent Attorney
PCT COSTS IN GENERAL
PCT EXPLANATION BREAKOUTLAYOUT. The PCT is a complex subject are that requires more than one page of explanation. The PCT discussion is on 5 web pages:
INTERNATIONAL STAGE PCT COSTSFOREIGN OR U.S. CLIENT - CHARGES FOR A PCT APPLICATION? For a PCT application prepared from scratch (when no national application exists), the preparation costs are the same as for a utility patent application: $3,000 small-entity or $4,500 large-entity preparation fees plus initial government filing costs, which are an additional $3,526 (est.). Government filing fees effective as of 24-MAY-2013 include: a transmittal fee of $240; plus a search fee of $2,080; plus an international fee of $1,206 for the first 30 pages (assumes max. discounts available). Other fees may apply.
U.S. applicants may alternatively select Europe, Korea, Russia or Australia as the search authority and this will change the above noted search
fee to $2,419 (eff. 01-JAN-2013) for Europe, $1,167 for Korea, $217 (eff. 01-JAN-2013)
for Russia, and $2,282 (eff. 01-JAN-2013) for
FILING U.S. UTILITY APPLICATION FIRST. For U.S. or foreign clients, if Attorney Louis Ventre, Jr. first prepares and submits a U.S. Patent application, he will then within a year thereafter prepare the PCT application for a fixed fee of $1,200. Government filing fees are noted above. The latest fees are posted at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office web site at http://www.uspto.gov/patents/init_events/pct/sample/fees.jsp. Other government fees may apply. For other considerations, see PCT strategies.FILING PCT APPLICATION WITHIN A YEAR OF U.S. UTILITY APPLICATION. When applicants want a non-provisional U.S. patent application followed within a year by the PCT application, the PCT application can be filed with less cost to the applicant by electronically filing it with the International Bureau in Geneva. Government fees vary but this option is usually cheaper.
FILING A PCT APPLICATION - FOREIGN FILERS. For foreign residents who are not U.S. citizens, Attorney Louis Ventre, Jr. can prepare your PCT application, but it must be filed in your country or region of residence, or in the International Bureau in Geneva, directly, that is, by you or by your local attorney. Attorney Louis Ventre will help you with this, but the rules prevent him from filing for you.
It is possible, however, to include Attorney Louis Ventre's name and address as an “address for correspondence” in your PCT application. Although Attorney Louis Ventre would not be entitled to act on your behalf, Attorney Louis Ventre would receive all correspondence which would normally be addressed to the applicant or his agent, and Attorney Louis Ventre would be able to make payments on your behalf. In this situation, Attorney Louis Ventre would not have the right to sign any papers, including letters, on your behalf, and these would have to be signed by you.
AFTER FILING PATENT PROSECUTION COSTS. Patent prosecution costs for PCT applications in the United States are billed at the Law Firm's standard hourly rates of $250 per hour for a large business and $175 per hour for most small entities. Attorney Louis Ventre, Jr. also caps the billing for most small entities at a maximum of $2,000 when the application has been first prepared by Attorney Louis Ventre, Jr.
NATIONAL STAGE PCT
National Stage. When the national stage for the application is required (at about 30 months from the earlier filed regular national application or 18 months from the PCT filing), you will be required to retain an attorney licensed in the foreign jurisdiction and pay the national filing fees in those foreign jurisdictions. That is when the costs can rapidly mount. You typically start with the national stage filing fees and then are hit with annual application maintenance fees. PCT fees tend vary frequently because of currency fluctuations. Attorney Louis Ventre, Jr. files U.S. National Stage applications for foreign and domestic residents.
Attorney costs for PCT National Stage applications in the U.S. are covered at pctnat.html, which explains the U.S. National Stage of the PCT process.
OVERALL COST OF PCT PATENT PROCESS
What Does an International Patent Cost? A while back, WIPO suggested that it would not be unusual to experience a total cost of $25,000 for a patent through the PCT system. This is apparently not published anymore. It would be unusual for PCT costs to be less than about $15,000 per country.
The U.S. General Accounting Office (renamed the Government Accountability Office) estimated in 2003 that for six European countries (France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Sweden, and the United Kingdom), Canada, Japan, and South Korea costs of obtaining and maintaining foreign patents for their 20 year life to be in the range of $160,000 to $330,000 (in 2002 dollars). GAO report: GAO–03–910, "Experts' Advice for Small Businesses Seeking Foreign Patents," (2003) at pp. 40-41.
The European Patent Office published
two charts showing estimated costs (downloaded 06/04/2007) for a
directly filed European Patent and for one filed under the PCT. For
European patents filed by way the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) for
eight countries (Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain,
Switzerland, Netherlands and Austria), the 10 year total cost is estimated
at about EUR 47,000 or about $55,000, excluding in-house preparation costs
for the patentee. For direct filing in the EPO (not thru the PCT),
the total cost is about EUR 32,000 or $44,000. In-house preparation
costs might add an additional $5,000 to $10,000 to both estimates.
This report is no longer available on the EPO site.
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© 2004 Louis Ventre, Jr.
This file last modified 05/24/13.