As a special administrative region of China, Hong Kong has its own intellectual property system, with the Hong Kong Intellectual Property department (IPD) handling the issues relating to patents, trademarks, industrial designs and copyrights in Hong Kong.
1. When can I file a short-term patent application?
In general, there is no time limit for filing a short-term patent application in Hong Kong. But if you wish to claim priority from a first application in a Paris Convention Country or WTO member territory, you should file your short-term patent application in Hong Kong, China within 12 months of filing the first application. If your invention has been disclosed and you claim that the disclosure does not prejudice your inventor’s novelty (see s109, Patents Ordinance), you should file your short-term patent application within 6 months of the disclosure.
In regards to the extension to Hong Kong for a designated Chinese application - the applicant cannot file a short-term patent application until the international application has entered its national phase in China. The applicant needs to file the short-term patent application within 6 months of the international application having entered its national phase in China, or within six months of the State Intellectual Property Office, People’s Republic of China issuing a national application notification.
2. Documents and information required for a short-term patent
a. Specification including description, claims, drawings in English or Chinese;
b. Abstract and title in both English and Chinese;
c. Applicant and inventor’s information including names, address and nationality;
d. Search report from one of the following offices;
e. International searching authority under Article 16, Patent Co-operation Treaty;
i. The state intellectual property offices of People’s republic of China;
ii. The European Patent office;
iii. The United Kingdom patent office.
3. Documents and information required for a short term patent based on a national phase entering application of PCT international application
a. International publication brochure;
b. International search report;
c. Notification of international application entering into national phase issued by SIPO;
d. The Chinese translation published by SIPO, if any;
e. A copy of any information published by the State Intellectual Property Office, People's Republic of China concerning the international application;
f. If the short-term patent application is made within six months after the State Intellectual Property Office, People's Republic of China issues the national application notification, a copy of the national application notification and the date of issue of the notification.
4. Examination of the short-term patent in Hong Kong
If the applicant meets the minimum requirement for registration, only a defects check and a preliminary examination will be conducted by the IPD. After finishing the examination the application will enter the register of patents and be published in the Hong King Intellectual property journey.
5. Duration of short-term patent in Hong Kong
Beginning from the date of filing, the registration of a short-term patent lasts for 4 years. It may be extended for an additional period of 4 years, up to a maximum of 8 years from the filing date.