Career as Patent Agent

Stream : Law, Defense & Civil Services
Sub Stream : Government

Patent Agent

Patents are granted by the government to help an inventor or company to protect their invention being copied by others for up to 20 years. As a patent attorney (previously known as a patent agent) you would help your clients or employer secure and protect patents and other intellectual property rights. If you've got a scientific or technical background and have an analytical mind, this job could be ideal for you. 
In this job you also have to know about intellectual property law. You will need to be able to explain complex technical information clearly. 
Many people entering this work have a degree in a scientific, engineering or technical subject. However, you might not need a degree if you have experience in high-level technical jobs. You will usually start out by finding work as a technical assistant and learning on the job.

Job responsibility:

As a patent attorney, your work would involve:
• meeting inventors or manufacturers to find out the details of their invention
• searching existing patents to check that the invention is original
• advising about the chances of being granted a patent
• writing a detailed legal description of the invention (known as a patent draft)
• applying for patents to the UK Intellectual Property Office or European Patent Office
• answering questions from patent examiners
• advising clients whose patent rights may have been broken
• representing clients if a case comes to court
• advising on other intellectual property issues such as design, copyright and trade marks
• keeping up to date with intellectual property law.

Employment Opportunities for Patent Agent:

You could work in private practice, advising clients on patent rights, or for a large manufacturer's in-house patent department. Competition for trainee places is strong.

How to become Patent Agent?

1) Who is a Patent Agent? 
A person who is registered to practice before Indian Patent Office is called Patent Agent. To be a Patent Agent he should qualify the Indian Patent Agent Examination held every year. 
2) Who conducts the Indian Patent Agent Examination? 
Indian Patent office conducts the Patent Agent Examination once in every year. The exam is conducted at Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai and Nagpur. Applicant can choose the centre of his or her choice (Click here to go to Official website of Indian Patent Office). 
3) What are the eligibility criteria for appearing in Patent Agent Exam? 

Following are the eligibility criteria for appearing in the Patent Agent Exam: 
– The applicant should be citizen of India & should complete the age of 21 years at the time of exam. 
– All science and technology graduates (B.Sc, M.Sc, B.Tech, etc.) from any university established under law in India or such other equivalent qualification specified under central government are eligible to give the exam. 
– Final year candidates are also eligible as long as they are able to produce final degree, mark sheets etc within 2 months of declaration of the Patent Agent Exam result they are appearing for. 
4) What is the pattern for Indian Patent Agent Examination? 

The exam is structured into three parts, namely: 
Paper I - (100 marks) which will have 40 objective type question carrying one mark each and rest will be descriptive type question of 60 marks. 
Paper II – (100 marks) which will have two sets of question on drafting carrying 30 marks each for- (separate for science and engineering) 
a) Drafting of specification from given claims and background. 
b) Drafting of claims from given specification 
Rest will have descriptive type question for 40 marks. 
Viva-voce examination (50 marks) will be based only on domain knowledge. 
Candidate should acquire minimum 50% in each paper and overall 60% to qualify as Patent Agent. 
5) Do I require a law degree to become Patent Agent? 
No. To become a patent agent one need not be a lawyer. Qualifying the patent agent examination is sufficient to practice as a patent agent in India. 
6) How many times one can appear for the examination? 
Till date no maximum number of allowed attempts has been notified by the Indian Patent Office. One can appear for the exam as many times as he wish until he qualify as a registered Patent Agent. 
7) What is the Syllabus for the Indian Patent Agent Examination? 
Although the Indian patent office has not prescribed any specific syllabus, but one has to be thorough with the practice and procedures of the patent office. The study material provided by Origiin IP Academy is very well versed and competent enough to clear the Patent Agent Examination. 
8) Can I practice outside India once I am a registered patent agent? 
No. This certification is for Indian citizens and recognized only by the Indian Patent Office. If anybody wishes to practice outside India like US and Europe, he or she has to qualify the patent agent exam for the respective countries. 
9) Where will I get the form for the exam? 
Once the exam is announced by the Patent Office, the forms may be filled online through Patent Office web site or may be downloaded.

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