How to patent an idea?

All startuppers often ask themselves the question ” How to patent an idea ” ? or ” I have this innovative idea: how can I protect myself from those who want to steal it from me”? In this StartUp Magazine post, we want to give you some valuable advice to defend yourself from those who wish to use your business idea fraudulently. But let’s start from the beginning.

What are the existing protections regarding patents and intellectual property?

Our legal system indicates a series of legal protections related to intellectual and industrial property.

The patent is essential protection, as it represents the title that allows the owner to use the patented idea exclusively in the State where the patent issued. 

It is possible to patent products, processes, foods, compounds and substances, which, once approved, can only used by the owner of the right to which it belongs.

The art. 45 CPI (Industrial Property Code) establishes that inventions belonging to any technical sector can patented and instead provides that  they cannot patented:

  1. a) discoveries, scientific theories, and mathematical methods; 
  2. b) plans, principles, and methods for intellectual activities, for games or commercial activities and computer programs; 
  3. c) the presentation of information.

However, the same article specifies that the prohibition applies to conditions that said discoveries. And said software considered ” as such ” so that if an invention made through them. It can, after appropriate analysis, patented.

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The methods for surgical and therapeutic treatment cannot patented, while medical devices can patent. Animal breeds cannot patented, but microbiological processes can.

Types of existing patents

In our country, there are two types of patents:

  • The patent for invention;
  • The utility model;

The patent for an invention  is the most potent form of protection granted to those ideas with a high degree of innovation. That represents a new and original solution to a technical problem never solved before.

The requirements for obtaining the patent for the invention are:

  • The novelty, as the object to be patented, must be new, never been patented in any country or put on the market;
  • The inventive step, as the object, must represent tangible progress in its field of application;
  • Industrial, therefore the ability to reproduce the invention in the industry;
  • Lawfulness, since it must be by the law;

Application to obtain the patent

The application to obtain the patent for an invention takes place through the compilation of documentation containing the description of the object, the drawing tables, and all the necessary claims. It must clear and precise documentation on all aspects related to the idea to patent. The application is subject to publication, which can take place within 18 months, during which it remains secret to avoid being used by others. Once issued, the patents are valid in the territory of the granting country. But there are also conventions that group together several countries and types of patents. The patent can be extended to the whole European Community ( European patent ), as an extension of the Italian patent, international patent, which can be requested through a PCT (Patent Cooperation Treaty) application, ex Novo or as an extension of the first two patents.

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Patent application

The patent application must contain the following information on the title page :

  • The owner of the patent that is the person who requested ownership of the idea;
  • The inventor (person or group of people who have materially developed the picture);
  • The patent title, which determines the technical designation;
  • The summary and the central figure, intended as a summary and the most representative figure among those present in the drawing boards;

Next, we have a description containing the State of the art achieved, limits, and pre-established aims. We have drawing boards that represent the representations of the idea and how it works.

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