COMMISSIONER OF PATENT DECISIONS

These are decisions made by the Commissioner of Patent as a result of Patent disputes. A patent is an exclusive right granted for an invention, which is a product or a process that provides a new way of doing something, or offers a new technical solution to a problem.

The patent provides protection for the owner, which gives him/her the right to exclude others from making, using, exercising, disposing of the invention, offering to dispose, or importing the invention. The protection is granted for a limited period of 20 years.

The South African Patents Act of 1978 as amended from time to time (Patents Amendment Act 14 of 1979, Patents Amendment Act 67 of 1983, Patents Amendment Act 44 of 1986, Patents Amendment Act 76 of 1988, General Law Amendment Act 49 of 1996, Intellectual Property Laws Amendment Act 38 of 1997, and Patents Amendment Act 58 of 2002) and the patent regulations under such Act governs all matters relating to patent and patent litigation. Procedural matters in litigation not dealt with by the patent regulations are determined under the regulations of the High Court. The interpretation of the Patents Act follows common law principals of Roman Dutch law, going back to early Roman legal doctrines as applied by early Dutch authorities. South Africa has acceded to the following international treaties and conventions relating to patents: Paris Convention, PCT, TRIPS, WTO.

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