Patents for Chemicals, Pharmaceuticals, and Biotechnology: Fundamentals of Global Law, Practice, and Strategy

By Philip W. Grubb | Go to book overview

18
DRAFTING THE CLAIMS

U.K. citizenship must be given to the inventor . . . without application and his family (wife and son and brother and sister and mother) needed for settlement in U.K. because of claim 24, inclusive claims 1 to 24.

Theodore Po Man Poon:
Claim 25 of British Patent Application GB 2 226 494

The Purpose and Nature of Patent Claims 303
Function of Claims 303
Claim Categories 304
Independent and Dependent Claims 304
Number of Claims 305
Form of Claims 306
General 306
In the UK 308
In the USA 309
In Germany 310
The Scope of the Claims 311
Free Beer and Pickled Onions 311

The Purpose and Nature of Patent Claims

Function of Claims

Until 1969 French patents had no claims, but ended with a résumé of the important features of the invention, and until recently this was also possible in Belgium. Now, however, all countries having patents, as well as the EPC, require at least one claim to define the invention.1 Claims have the purpose of defining the scope of subject matter for which protection is sought.2 A competitor does not infringe and cannot be stopped unless he makes, sells, offers for sale, imports. or does something falling within the scope of at least one claim of the granted patent. Although, as we shall see, some European countries still interpret claims more broadly than their literal wording, others do not. Therefore a patent drafter should assume that his or her claims will be interpreted literally. If you want to be able to stop a competitor doing something, you should claim it literally, and not rely upon a court to broaden your protection for you.

____________________
1
E.g. Art. 78(1)(c), EPC.
2
As stated e.g. in Art. 84, first sentence, EPC.

-303-

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