The most significant amendment to Australia’s patent legislation since enactment of the current Patents Act 1990 (Cth) has now come into effect with the passing of the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Raising the Bar) Act 2012 (Cth) into law.
This new law has far-reaching consequences for those seeking and enforcing patent rights in Australia, in effect establishing a class of new Act patents to which the higher validity standards required by the new law will apply, and old Act patents to which relatively lower validity standards established by the pre-amendment or old law will apply.
The changes brought about by the new law will also be felt in a procedural sense for patent applicants, patentees and opponents alike, with the commencement of new proceedings and the cancellation of others previously available under the old law.
Further, there will also be important consequences regarding exemption from infringement for patentees and alleged infringers with the codifi cation of experimental use provisions, and a broadening of old law exemptions to cover acts done for seeking regulatory approval of any product for which approval is required for marketing.
If you or your clients have business interests in Australia, it is very important that you come to an understanding of the new law sooner rather than later, as in many instances, the opportunities to be had and the risks to be mitigated under the new law will require you to take relevant action now.
In this guide we outline the key changes under the new law, our analysis, possible action items and timing. Given the complexity of the new law, our commentary is necessarily of a general nature and we strongly advise you to contact us should you require professional advice on any particular issue.
We trust that this document is of use to you.
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