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Patents Act 1977


This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

  1. Introductory Text

  2. Part I New Domestic Law

    1. Patentability

      1. 1.Patentable inventions

      2. 2.Novelty

      3. 3.Inventive step

      4. 4.Industrial application

      5. 5.Priority date

      6. 6.Disclosure of matter, etc., between earlier and later applications

    2. Right to apply for and obtain a patent and be mentioned as inventor

      1. 7.Right to apply for and obtain a patent

      2. 8.Determination before grant of questions about entitlement to patents, etc.

      3. 9.Determination after grant of questions referred before grant

      4. 10.Handling of application by joint applicants

      5. 11.Effect of transfer of application under s. 8 or 10

      6. 12.Determination of questions about entitlement to foreign and convention patents, etc.

      7. 13.Mention of inventor

    3. Applications

      1. 14.Making of application

      2. 15.Date of filing application

      3. 16.Publication of application

    4. Examination and search

      1. 17.Preliminary examination and search

      2. 18.Substantive examination and grant or refusal of patent

      3. 19.General power to amend application before grant

      4. 20.Failure of application

      5. 21.Observations by third party on patentability

    5. Security and safety

      1. 22.Information prejudicial to defence of realm or safety of public

      2. 23.Restrictions on applications abroad by United Kingdom residents

    6. Provisions as to patents after grant

      1. 24.Publication and certificate of grant

      2. 25.Term of patent

      3. 26.Patent not to be impugned for lack of unity

      4. 27.General power to amend specification after grant

      5. 28.Restoration of lapsed patents

      6. 29.Surrender of patents

    7. Property in patents and applications, and registration

      1. 30.Nature of, and transactions in, patents and applications for patents

      2. 31.Nature of, and transactions in, patents and applications for patents in Scotland

      3. 32.Register of patents, etc.

      4. 33.Effect of registration, etc., on rights in patents

      5. 34.Rectification of register

      6. 35.Evidence of register, documents, etc.

      7. 36.Co-ownership of patents and applications for patents

      8. 37.Determination of right to patent after grant

      9. 38.Effect of transfer of patent under s. 37

    8. Employees' inventions

      1. 39.Right to employees' inventions

      2. 40.Compensation of employees for certain inventions

      3. 41.Amount of compensation

      4. 42.Enforceability of contracts relating to employees' inventions

      5. 43.Supplementary

    9. Contracts as to patented products, etc.

      1. 44.Avoidance of certain restrictive conditions

      2. 45.Determination of parts of certain contracts

    10. Licences of right and compulsory licences

      1. 46.Patentee's application for entry in register that licences are available as of right

      2. 47.Cancellation of entry made under s. 46

      3. 48.Compulsory licences

      4. 49.Provisions about licences under s. 48

      5. 50.Exercise of powers on applications under s. 48

      6. 51.Application by Crown in cases of monopoly or merger

      7. 52.Opposition, appeal and arbitration

      8. 53.Compulsory licences; supplementary provisions

      9. 54.Special provisions where patented invention is being worked abroad

    11. Use of patented inventions for services of the Crown

      1. 55.Use of patented inventions for services of the Crown

      2. 56.Interpretation, etc., of provisions about Crown use

      3. 57.Rights of third parties in respect of Crown use

      4. 58.References of disputes as to Crown use

      5. 59.Special provisions as to Crown use during emergency

    12. Infringement

      1. 60.Meaning of infringement

      2. 61.Proceedings for infringement of patent

      3. 62.Restrictions on recovery of damages for infringement

      4. 63.Relief for infringement of partially valid patent

      5. 64.Right to continue use begun before priority date

      6. 65.Certificate of contested validity of patent

      7. 66.Proceedings for infringement by a co-owner

      8. 67.Proceedings for infringement by exclusive licensee

      9. 68.Effect of non-registration on infringement proceedings

      10. 69.Infringement of rights conferred by publication of application

      11. 70.Remedy for groundless threats of infringement proceedings

      12. 71.Declaration or declarator as to non-infringement

    13. Revocation of patents

      1. 72.Power to revoke patents on application

      2. 73.Comptroller's power to revoke patents on his own initiative

    14. Putting validity in issue

      1. 74.Proceedings in which validity of patent may be put in issue

    15. General provisions as to amendment of patents and applications

      1. 75.Amendment of patent in infringement or revocation proceedings

      2. 76.Amendments of applications and patents not to include added matter

  3. Part II Provisions about International Conventions

    1. European patents and patent applications

      1. 77.Effect of European patent (UK)

      2. 78.Effect of filing an application for a European patent (UK)

      3. 79.Operation of s. 78 in relation to certain European patent applications

      4. 80.Authentic text of European patents and patent applications

      5. 81.Conversion of European patent applications

      6. 82.Jurisdiction to determine questions as to right to a patent

      7. 83.Effect of patent decisions of competent authorities of other states

      8. 84.Patent agents and other representatives

      9. 85.European patent attorneys

    2. Community patents

      1. 86.Implementation of Community Patent Convention

      2. 87.Decisions on Community Patent Convention

      3. 88.Jurisdiction in legal proceedings in connection with Community Patent Convention

    3. International applications for patents

      1. 89.Effect of filing international application for a patent

    4. Convention countries

      1. 90.Orders in Council as to convention countries

    5. Miscellaneous

      1. 91.Evidence of conventions and instruments under conventions

      2. 92.Obtaining evidence for proceedings under the European Patent Convention

      3. 93.Enforcement of orders for costs

      4. 94.Communication of information to the European Patent Office, etc.

      5. 95.Financial provisions

  4. Part III Miscellaneous and General

    1. Legal Proceedings

      1. 96.The Patents Court

      2. 97.Appeals from the comptroller

      3. 98.Proceedings in Scotland

      4. 99.General powers of the court

      5. 100.Burden of proof in certain cases

      6. 101.Exercise of comptroller's discretionary powers

      7. 102.Right of audience in patent proceedings

      8. 103.Extension of privilege for communications with solicitors relating to patent proceedings

      9. 104.Privilege for communications with patent agents relating to patent proceedings

      10. 105.Extension of privilege in Scotland for communications relating to patent proceedings

      11. 106.Costs and expenses in proceedings before the Court under s. 40

      12. 107.Costs and expenses in proceedings before the comptroller

      13. 108.Licences granted by order of comptroller

    2. Offences

      1. 109.Falsification of register, etc.

      2. 110.Unauthorised claim of patent rights

      3. 111.Unauthorised claim that patent has been applied for

      4. 112.Misuse of title " Patent Office "

      5. 113.Offences by corporations

    3. Patent agents

      1. 114.Restrictions on practice as patent agent

      2. 115.Power of comptroller to refuse to deal with certain agents

    4. Immunity of department

      1. 116.Immunity of department as regards official acts

    5. Administrative provisions

      1. 117.Correction of errors in patents and applications

      2. 118.Information about patent applications and patents, and inspection of documents

      3. 119.Service by post

      4. 120.Hours of business and excluded days

      5. 121.Comptroller's annual report

    6. Supplemental

      1. 122.Crown's right to sell forfeited articles

      2. 123.Rules

      3. 124.Rules, regulations and orders; supplementary

      4. 125.Extent of invention

      5. 126.Stamp duty

      6. 127.Existing patents and applications

      7. 128.Priorities between patents and applications under 1949 Act and this Act

      8. 129.Application of Act to Crown

      9. 130.Interpretation

      10. 131.Northern Ireland

      11. 132.Short title, extent, commencement, consequential amendments and repeals

    1. Schedule 1

      Application of 1949 Act to existing patents and applications

      1. 1.(1) The provisions of the 1949 Act referred to in...

      2. 2.(1) In section 6 of the 1949 Act, at the...

      3. 3.(1) This paragraph and paragraph 4 below shall have effect...

      4. 4.(1) The term of every new existing patent under section...

      5. 5.In section 26(3) of the 1949 Act (no patent of...

      6. 6.Notwithstanding anything in section 32(1)(j) of the 1949 Act (ground...

      7. 7.(1) In section 33 of the 1949 Act (revocation of...

      8. 8.In section 101(1) of the 1949 Act (interpretation) there shall...

    2. Schedule 2

      Application of this Act to Existing Patents and Applications

      1. 1.(1) Without prejudice to those provisions of Schedule 4 below...

      2. 2.In those provisions as they apply by virtue of this...

    3. Schedule 3

      Repeals of Provisions of 1949 Act

      1. 1.Subject to the provisions of Schedule 4 below, the provisions...

      2. 2.The provisions are:— (a) section 14 (opposition to grant of...

    4. Schedule 4

      Transitional Provisions

      1. General

        1. 1.In so far as any instrument made or other thing...

      2. Use of patented invention for services of the Crown

        1. 2.(1) Any question whether— (a) an act done before the...

      3. Infringement

        1. 3.(1) Any question whether an act done before the appointed...

      4. Notice of opposition

        1. 4.(1) Where notice of opposition to the grant of a...

      5. Secrecy

        1. 5.(1) Where directions given under section 18 of the 1949...

      6. Revocation

        1. 6.(1) Where before the appointed day an application has been...

        2. 7.(1) This paragraph applies where an application has been made...

      7. Licences of right and compulsory licences

        1. 8.(1) Sections 35 to 41 and 43 to 45 of...

      8. Convention countries

        1. 9.(1) Without prejudice to paragraph 1 above, an Order in...

      9. Appeals from court on certain petitions for revocation

        1. 10.Where the court has given judgment on a petition under...

      10. Appeals from comptroller under continuing provisions of 1949 Act

        1. 11.(1) In this paragraph "the continuing 1949 Act provisions "...

      11. Appeals from comptroller under repealed provisions of 1949 Act

        1. 12.(1) This paragraph applies where an appeal to the Appeal...

      12. Appeals from Appeal Tribunal to Court of Appeal

        1. 13.Section 87(1) of the 1949 Act shall continue to apply...

      13. Rules

        1. 14.The power to make rules under section 123 of this...

      14. Supplementary

        1. 15.Section 97(2) of this Act applies to—

        2. 16.In this Schedule " the old law" means the 1949...

        3. 17.For the purposes of this Schedule— (a) issue is joined...

        4. 18.(1) Nothing in the repeals made by this Act in...

    5. Schedule 5

      Consequential Amendments

      1. Crown Proceedings Act 1947 (c. 44)

        1. 1.In section 3 of the Crown Proceedings Act 1947, for...

      2. Registered Designs Act 1949 (c. 88)

        1. 2.In section 32(1) of the Registered Designs Act 1949—

        2. 3.In sections 42 and 44(1) of the Registered Designs Act...

      3. Defence Contracts Act 1958 (c. 38)

        1. 4.In subsection (4) of section 4 of the Defence Contracts...

      4. Administration of Justice Act 1970 (c. 31)

        1. 5.(1) In subsections (2) and (3) of section 10 of...

      5. Atomic Energy Authority (Weapons Group) Act 1973 (c. 4)

        1. 6.In section 5(2) of the Atomic Energy Authority (Weapons Group)...

      6. Fair Trading Act 1973 (c. 41)

        1. 7.(1) In paragraph 10 of Schedule 4 to the Fair...

      7. Restrictive Trade Practices Act 1976 (c. 34)

        1. 8.(1) In paragraph 10 of Schedule 1 to the Restrictive...

    6. Schedule 6

      Enactments Repealed

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