Patent registration in the Bahamas. The Bahamas is a country within the Lucayan Archipelago of the West Indies in the Atlantic. By terms of GDP per capita, The Bahamas is one of the richest countries in the Americas. This economy has a very competitive tax regime. The Bahamas relies heavily on tourism to generate most of its economic activity. After tourism, the next most important economic sector is banking and offshore international financial services, accounting for some 15% of GDP. It was revealed in the Panama Papers that The Bahamas is the jurisdiction with the most offshore entities or companies in the world. Accordingly, many businesses want to enter this market and one of the most important preparations a business needs to take before expanding to this country is to learn the procedure of patent registration in the Bahamas.
Patent in the Bahamas
According to the Bahamas laws on IP, a patent in the Bahamas can only be granted to the applicant if the invention submitted is new, nonobvious, inventive, and industrially applicable.
In addition, an invention that is patentable can also be an improvement on existing items or methods.
Accordingly, the invention that does not have the above attributes will not be patentable in the Bahamas, such as:
- Discoveries as well as laws of nature and mathematical methods;
- Aesthetic designs;
- Systems, rules, and methods for the performance of mental labor, games or management as well as computer programs and
- Presentation of data and abstract ideas.
Necessary documents for patent registration in the Bahamas
The necessary documents for patent registration in the Bahamas include:
- The request to grant a patent (patent application);
- Detailed information on the applicant(s) including the applicant’s and inventor’s names, addresses, and citizenships, etc.;
- A description of the invention (even if it complies with formal requirements only).
- A signed and stamped power of attorney by the applicant(s);
- A copy of the amendments (if any);
- Priority documents (if any).
- Other required documents.
To claim priority in the Bahamas through a patent that has already been registered in other countries, the application for patent registration in the Bahamas must be filed within 1 year from the date of the first application in the first country.
The procedure of patent registration in the Bahamas
To obtain a patent in the Bahamas, the applicant needs to file the patent application along with the supporting documents to the IP Office of Bahamas.
Once received, the examiners at the IP Office will conduct a thorough formal examination to check if the application complies with the regulations of the law.
If there are no errors found, the decision to publish the application will be issued and the patent application will be published publicly.
After the publication, the applicant may request a substantive examination.
If there are no problems, the patent will be granted to the applicant. The entire process of patent registration in the Bahamas may take up approximately 1 year from the filing date to the issuance of the patent.
Once a patent is obtained, no other parties can use, manufacture, duplicate, or sell any invention that infringes upon the patented invention without the patentee’s authorization.
IP treaties of the Bahamas
The Bahamas is a member of the following International IP treaties:
- The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
- Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works
- Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property
- Universal Copyright Convention (UCC)
- Convention establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
- Convention on the means of prohibiting and preventing the illicit import, export, and transfer of ownership of cultural property
The list of Bahamas IP Firms can be found here.