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06 July 2020
Since 1 April 2020 it has been possible to file an opposition to invalidate a French patent directly with the National Industrial Property Institute (INPI).(1)
Previously, such invalidations had to go through a procedure before the Court of Paris, which created a number of disadvantages – for example, the request was examined by judges without scientific knowledge and required representation by an attorney at law. The length of these legal proceedings, although short, was also a hurdle.
This will no longer be the case with the new opposition proceedings before the INPI, which are similar to those of the European Patent Office.
An opposition can be filed against any French patent issued on or after 1 April 2020 within nine months of its issuance. The opposition will be handled by INPI officials with a technical background and experience in examining numerous patents in the relevant field. Its duration will be limited in order for a decision to be reached quickly.
In light of the above, parties should remain informed about the granting of French patents in specific technical fields which are deemed relevant for their innovations.
For further information on this topic please contact Chantal Noël at GEVERS & ORES by telephone (+33 01 45 00 48 48) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org). The GEVERS & ORES website can be accessed at www.gevers.eu.
(1) This article is part two of a series on the Action Plan for Business Growth and Transformation (PACTE) affecting patent law in France. For the first article in the series, please see "INPI examination of inventive step: time to make a choice!".
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