A two-year patent prosecution highway (PPH) pilot project has been announced between the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) and the Israel Patent Office (ILPO). This pilot program is scheduled to end on October 31, 2014.
The Canada-Israel PPH pilot program is expected to allow volunteer applicants in both countries to obtain corresponding patents faster. This initiative may be of great interest for some clients for whom both jurisdictions are of interest. It is worth noting that a Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement has been in force since January 1, 1997.
CIPO will process requests for advanced prosecution under the PPH free of charge. On requesting the PPH program, the Applicant will have to submit inter alia a claim correspondence table between the Canadian and the Israeli claims.
This new PPH pilot project will be an addition to the existing PPH programs Canada already has. Canada has now an established PPH program with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Pilot PPH programs are also being conducted with respectively the Danish Patent and Trademark Office (pilot ending Sept. 30, 2013), the German Patent and Trademark Office (pilot ending Sept. 30, 2014), the Japan Patent Office (pilot ending Sept. 30, 2013), the Korean Intellectual Property Office (pilot ending Sept. 30, 2013), the National Board of Patents and Registration of Finland (pilot ending Sept. 30, 2014), the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office (pilot ending Sept. 30, 2014), the United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office (pilot ending January 30, 2014) and the PCT (pilot ending January 31, 2013).
Applicants should take advantage of such program to obtain their patent faster if speed is an issue.