Various international treaties, in particular the European Patent Convention (EPC) and the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), allow for the registration of a patent in different ways. The following aspects should be considered when deciding on the specific patent application strategy:
- Existing patents in the relevant area of the invention (result of a patent search)
- Market and competition situation in the respective area of the invention in consideration of technical, commercial and territorial aspects
- Determination of what shall be protected by the invention (process and/or product patent)
- Stage of development of the invention (existence of an idea only or of a prototype already?)
- Availability of funds
- Mode of utilisation of the patent (utilisation by the patent owner, sale of the granted patent, licensing etc.)
All these aspects and further issues should be discussed in detail together with a patent attorney.