Filing a Canadian Patent Application

It’s not too late!  Enter the national phase in Canada up to 42 months from the earliest priority date.

 A declaration stating that the applicant is the legal representative of the inventor is required.
One-year grace period
The filing date (or PCT filing date) of the Canadian application must be no more than 12 months after the first public disclosure of the invention by the applicant (or by someone who obtained knowledge of the invention directly or indirectly from the applicant).

Examination of a Canadian Patent Application

Want to go fast?
There are a variety of programs to accelerate examination. Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH), Green Technology, etc. To ensure eligibility for accelerated examination, never let the application go abandoned.
Want to go slow?
You can defer requesting examination up to 5 years from the filing date (or the PCT filing date). You are given 6 months to respond to each Office Action, and 6 months to pay the final fee after allowance.

Click to find out how to prepare your Canadian patent application for examination.


Claims in a Canadian Patent Application

How many claims?

As long as the claims are clear and concise, there is no limit on the number of claims in a Canadian patent application.

There are no per-claim fees.

Present all claims of interest, as there is no US-style continuation practice.

Unity of invention

If claims are directed to different inventions, the Examiner will make a lack-of-unity objection, requiring that the claims are limited to a single invention.

Claims to other inventions can be pursued in a divisional application, which is given the same filing date as the original application.

The divisional application must be filed before the original application issues as a patent. If the original application becomes abandoned, the divisional application must be filed before the expiration of the time for reinstating the original application.

Multiple dependency

A claim can depend from more than one previous claim.
DO NOT write “… any of the preceding claims”.
DO refer to the claims by number. (e.g. “… any one of claims 1 to 5”).

Biotech claims

If the application contains a sequence listing, the claims may refer to sequences represented in the sequence listing by the sequence identifier and preceded by “SEQ ID NO:”.

Where the specification refers to a deposit of biological materials, the claims may refer to that deposit.


Amending a Canadian Patent Application

When to amend?

Amendments can be made – as a matter of right – any time before allowance.

After allowance, amendments to correct obvious clerical errors may be made prior to payment of the final fee, without incurring any additional official fees. Other amendments to the application may be made, accompanied by an official fee of CA$400, only if they would not necessitate a further search by the Examiner in respect of the application and would not make the application non-compliant with the Patent Act or the Patent Rules.

What to amend?

Amendments can be made to the description, claims, drawings and abstract.

Amendments are not permitted to add matter that is not reasonably to be inferred from the application as originally filed, except in so far as it is admitted in the specification that the matter is prior art.

How to amend?

Amendments are made by inserting new pages in place of the pages altered by the amendments.

Amendments must be accompanied by a statement explaining the nature and purpose of the amendments.

When amending claims, ensure that claims are numbered consecutively, beginning with the number “1”. Do not skip any numbers.