« PreviousContinue »
the verdict of the Court at the expense of the infringer.
In a case of the infringement of a patented process for manufacture of a new material, all materials of a like nature are considered as made according to the patent until proof be produced to the contrary. It is no defence in case of infringement that the patent is bad; but the infringer can usually get the case delayed in order to petition the Patent Office for the revocation of the patent if the latter be not more than five years old, and the case will be heard by the annulment department of the Patent Office, which has power, after hearing both sides, to annul the whole or any part of the patent and decree costs to either party. If the petitioner be abroad, he may be called on to deposit security for these costs before being heard. If a patent er this law be on the rolls for five years it is no longer attackable.
Taxes.- Patents of Invention are subject on pain of forfeiture to an annual tax increasing each year.
Patents of addition are granted free of further taxes terminating with the term of the principal patent, but if the principal patent be annulled by a court, the taxes are payable instead on the patent of addition on the day on which they would have to have been paid on the original patent. In this case the date of the patent of addition determines the amount of tax, the period between the date of the patent of addition and the next tax day being considered the first patent year of the patent of addition. The patent terminates at the end of the fifteen years' term of the original patent. The annual taxes can be paid at any time in advance, and, if the patent be officially abandoned before they come due, the taxes already paid but still undue will be returned.
If by any
they be not paid when they become due, the patent becomes void, but can be resuscitated within twelve weeks of the date of the taxes becoming due by the payment of the said taxes, with an additional fine of 1os.
Working.--A patent must be worked in the Empire to an adequate extent within three years of grant, or licenses must be granted to applicants on reasonable terms and security, or it can be annulled as contrary to public interest for it to be maintained. This rule is liberally interpreted. Making efforts to introduce the invention and being prepared to supply the demand may be deemed sufficient, and if there be no demand, and the inventor tries to create that demand and fails, the patent need not be worked till a deinand springs up.
he declaration of the court in Wyngaert v. Wegmann, 1884, is instructive, where Wegmann manufactured the porcelain rollers of his mill in Switzerland, supplying them for mills manufactured in Germany, and Wyngaert sought to have the claim for the porcelain rollers made void. It is as follows: “As the defendant has not manufactured the patented rollers within three years in Germany, this court has the power to annul the patent, but it does not find any occasion to make use of its power, chiefly on account of the great advantages which have been conferred upon the German milling trade through the introduction of F. Wegmann's porcelain rollers. As a rule, a patent should be declared null and void, if not manufactured within the legal term. In this case, the chief weight of the national economical importance of the machine is not attached to its manufacture, but to its use, and, moreover, the legal requirements of the patent have been satisfied in Claim I.," which was for the machinery or mill in which the porcelain rollers were used.
On the other hand, in a case where 3,000 of the patented articles had been made in the country and 300,000 imported during the same period, and the 3,000 turned out to be the simpler variety, while the more complicated variety made abroad was forbidden to the German licensee, the patent was declared void for want of sufficient working.
Where a part only of the invention has been duly worked, the rights to the unworked part may be declared forfeited. In other cases offers to grant licenses (the inventor not importing articles in accordance with the invention) were held a sufficient working, though no working really took place.
Protection of Useful Designs.—These are granted for new or improved tools, or instruments and improvements in the form of usual devices or of parts thereof, but cannot be made to cover processes, or abstract ideas, or principles. There is no examination as to novelty, and no oppositions to grant are allowed, and where an application for a full German patent of invention for an arrangement of machinery or involving form is likely to be refused, it is a very common and useful resource to apply for a design protection. This protection, however, if the invention be old, can be upset in a court of law. Duration three years, renewable for three years more.
These design patents are becoming very popular in Germany, and are obtained in large numbers.
Actions for infringements of these patents are extremely cheap, and the Court can award either a punishment or a fine not exceeding £250, or an imprisonment of not exceeding one year, and the publication of the particulars of the action and the sentence of the Court at the expense of the infringer. Or, in addition to the above penalty, on the application of the patentee, it can decree damages not exceeding £500, for which all the infringers—if there be more than one-are jointly liable.
Illegal Marking.–Any one marking goods or providing objects (or the packing of the same) with any marking indicating that the objects are patented, or even in his advertisements, business cards, or paper, using words or marks falsely indicating or likely to induce the belief that a thing is patented when it is not, is liable to a fine of £50.
Publication. As German patents are published often immediately after application, and are granted irrespective of the duration of foreign patents, it is best in all cases to apply for Russian, Hungarian, and Austrian, and other patents before or simultaneously with the German one. Printed copies of his own patent specifications and drawings can be obtained by a patentee soon after grant at almost cost price.
In December, 1904, the number of patents of invention or addition issued since the opening of the Patent Office at Berlin, July, 1877, had reached 158,000, and nearly three times as many more had been applied for and refused. The Author's firm has, however, obtained about 80 per cent of all its applications, probably through carefully weeding out unlikely cases, and framing the German applications specially for Germany, instead of following the usual practice with too many patent agents of using the same draft specification for each country.
Usual costs: Original patent, or Patent of Addition, £15.
Design Registration, £5 to £8. Renewing it for three years, £4.
Taxes end of first year, £3 1os. ; end of second year, £6; and so on, increasing £2 nos. each year.
Appeals, from £5. Amendments, £2.
(Population of Garrison, 6,000.) The Governor can, by ordinance, on the fulfilment of the requisite formalities, extend the scope of a British patent to Gibralter. Cost about £15.
GOLD COAST. (Population, white, about 3,000.) (Population, coloured, about 1,000,000.) Substantially the present English law, altered as regards administrative details to suit the colony, was enacted in 1900 with these exceptions. The assignee, or, in the case of an inventor resident abroad, his agent, can obtain a patent. Opponents must file security for costs, and costs are awarded in case of oppositions to the successful party. Patents obtained in any other country can be extended to this colony if the invention be not yet worked there. The colony has joined the Union for the Protection of Industrial Property.
The taxes are those ruling under the British law of 1852, namely, £ 50 at the end of four years, £100 at the end of seven, or annual taxes before the commencement of the fifth and subsequent years of £10, £10, £10, £10, £15, £15, £20, £20, £20, £20 respectively. Agency fee, £i is.
Usual costs: Patent, Provisional, £6.
(Population, 2,500,000.) A special Act of Legislature is required to obtain à patent. Very few are applied for. Greece has now