In continuation of the Brazilian Patent and Trademark Office’s (BPTO) efforts to reduce the backlog of patent applications under examination, its Patent Department (DIRPA) has created a pilot program for pre-examining patent applications.

The program will commence on January 23, 2018, starting with publication in the Industrial Property Bulletin No. 2455. For each Bulletin, the BPTO will issue preliminary examination reports for patent applications that were filed with priority claims, as long as those applications have already been examined by other foreign IP offices.

The report shall be limited to informing of the prior art search cited by the foreign Patent and Trademark Office, without further technical analysis by the BPTO.

Thereafter the applicant will have a 60-day period to make adjustments to the application, taking into account the prior art search cited before, as well as provide any documentation that would collaborate with the examination of the patent application. If the applicant does not file within the deadline, the patent application will be dismissed by the BPTO.

In accordance with this program, the applicant may also voluntarily submit a new version of the patent request rectifying the irregularities pointed out by the foreign Patent Office.

The purpose of this program is to expedite the substantive analysis process of the patent application, i.e. even before the examiner devotes time to the technical analysis, office actions that would probably be issued during such analysis are anticipated and corrected. Additionally, applications where the applicant no longer has interest in the patent, whether due to the obstacles pointed out by other offices or for any other reason, will be dismissed.

The companies with patent applications with priority claims in Brazil are advised to pay attention to the BPTO’s Industrial Property Bulletin publications, and should take advantage of this new program by submitting, voluntarily, with inclusion of the modifications already made in the other offices, in order to expedite the substantive analysis of the patent application.