Sep 20,2019 | 12 min read

Indian Patent Office Issues Over Programming Licenses

Author - Associate Shereen Abdin

The patent office has issued another form of adjusted rules for the patentability of Computer Related Inventions (CRIs) on June 30th, 2017. It is the third time the rules identified with the patentability of CRIs have been adjusted. The first rendition of the rules was issued on st August 21st 21st (2015 Guidelines) which were later supplanted by the regulations issued on 19th February 19th (2016 Guidelines).

Both the previous rules brought up a few issues and exceptional discussion because of the absence of clarity on patentability model for CRI licenses. Specifically prerequisite for equipment part to be novel notwithstanding the product/program.


According to 2015 rules, the patentability foundation gave:

  • Novel equipment, or 
  • Novel equipment with a unique programming/program or

An innovative programming/program with known equipment which goes past typical cooperation with such material and influences change in usefulness as well as execution of the current machine.

Indian Patent Office Issues Over Programming LicensesThe above rules prompted facilitating the patentability bar as for curiosity of the equipment part as it permitted the patent on Computer. Related. Inventions (CRIs). It is having a new programming/program with known equipment which goes past typical collaboration with such material. It also influences change in usefulness or potentially the execution of the current machine. The rules were anyway questioned by nearby programming industry, and new businesses on the ground would mean a surge of programming licenses. The 2016 practices necessitated that the focal point of the inspector ought to be on the primary substance of the innovation and not the specific structure where it is guaranteed. The cases should appropriately be translated, and the genuine commitment of the claim must be recognized.  If the responsibility lies just in a scientific technique, business strategy or calculation, the cases are to be denied. It additionally rattled off Tests/Indicators for the patent analysts to decide Patentability of CRIs as referenced underneath:

  • Appropriately interpret the evidence and distinguish real commitment
  • On the off chance that the commitment lies just in scientific strategy, business technique or calculation, deny the case

On the off chance that the commitment lies in the field of the PC program, check whether it is guaranteed related to novel equipment and continue to different strides to decide patentability regarding the innovation. The PC program in itself is rarely patentable. If the commitment lies exclusively in the PC program, deny the case. If the promise lies in both the PC program just as equipment, continue to different strides of patentability.

The above rules were again the reason for concern, especially in situations where the equipment part was not novel to the degree as wanted by the Patent Office.

2017 Guidelines

The Patent Office has now issued crisp rules to address the worries of partners. One of the fundamental highlights of 2017 regulations is that the erasure of the prescribed test or indicators to decide the patentability of CRIs as defined above. Thus far, the rules were carefully connected by the inspector; and on the off-chances when the equipment and programming did not breeze through the curiosity assessment, they were declined at the limit. The erasure of these "test parameters" offers prudence to the inspectors to concentrate on the primary substance of the innovation, not the specific structure in which it is asserted. It is intensified by the explanation given in the rules that when the issue identifies with equipment/programming connection, the declaration of the usefulness as a "strategy" is to be decided on its substance.

At last, it might be noticed that the Patents Act unmistakably bars PC programs as such. Subsequently, rules must be perused with the arrangements in the Patent Act. We accept that the analysts would have had tact while deciding the patentability of CRIs else they may not permit cover rejection of equipment oddity prerequisite in a patent application by merely disguising the substance of the case by its wording.

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Lawyered Team

Lawyered Team