Final opportunity to file new Innovation Patents

22 July 2021


The Australian government is phasing out the innovation patent. The last day to file any new innovation patents is 25 August 2021. Beyond this date it will only be possible to file innovation patents as divisionals from already pending non-provisional applications filed prior to 25 August 2021.

What is an innovation patent?

An innovation patent is a lower tier patent compared to the typical “standard” patent.

Key differences of innovation patents are:

  • Lower patentability threshold — they require an “innovative step” which is less onerous than the “inventive step” requirement for a standard patent.

  • Shorter lifetime — the term of protection is 8 years, compared to 20 years for a standard patent.

  • Optional substantive examination —substantive examination can be requested at any time during the term of an innovation patent on an “as needs” basis, keeping costs to a minimum. However, whilst substantive examination is optional, an innovation patent cannot be enforced until it has passed substantive examination (known as “certification”).

Who should apply for an innovation patent?

Innovation patents are particularly suited to clients with inventions that are minor improvements who may be concerned about meeting the patentability threshold requirements for a standard patent.


If you a have any queries in respect of innovation patents, or would like file an innovation patent prior to the deadline, please contact us.