Purpose & Use
The reason of missing out relevant prior arts is that there exists a vast pool of prior art (information) in the world today and due to heavy work load at patent offices it is difficult for them to spend lot of time on each case to find all the relevant documents. Many times, language barriers and non-availability of literature from foreign patent offices, also results in missing of existing foreign prior art. Though patent examiners are very experienced, but it is said that no search is a perfect search. Therefore, to confirm the validity of patent, this search becomes mandatory.
The Invalidity search is mostly ordered by defendants because if they can invalidate the plaintiff’s patent, with previously existing prior art(s) the patent can be considered invalid and cannot stop others from selling or manufacturing the technology in dispute. Plaintiff’s or patent owners can also conduct the validity search for their own patent as a part of due diligence exercise to know the strength of their own patent.
Process & Reporting
During search on patent and non patent databases, one has to look for patents or any published data prior to the priority date of the patent application in question that can invalidate the claim of the patent in question. Any type of data, published prior to the said date, which is similar to the claimed invention, can be useful to invalidate the claims of the subject patent to prove that it lacked novelty at first place.
The search is executed both in patent databases and non-patent databases. Besides, file wrapper analysis and citation analysis are also carried out to unearth relevant results. The obtained results are delivered in well documented reports.
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