Patent registration in Malta. Malta, officially known as the Republic of Malta and formerly Melita, is a Southern European island country consisting of an archipelago in the Mediterranean Sea. Malta is classified as an advanced economy together with 32 other countries according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Currently, Malta’s major resources are limestone, a favorable geographic location, and a productive labor force. 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 Malta.
Patent in Malta
To be patentable in this country, an invention must meet the requirements of novelty, inventiveness, and industrial applicability.
However, if the disclosure of the invention in the patent application in Malta is absolutely necessary, the applicant should enter into a non-disclosure agreement with the third parties to whom the invention would be disclosed in order to protect their rights.
It should be noted that in Malta, biological inventions may also be patentable, subject to certain ethical and moral exceptions.
Necessary documents for patent registration
The necessary documents for patent registration in Malta include:
- The request to grant a patent (patent application);
- Detailed information on the applicant(s) including the applicant’s and inventor’s names, addresses, citizenships, etc.;
- A description of the invention;
- 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.
The procedure for patent registration
To obtain a patent in Malta, the applicant needs to file their patent application to the IP Office of Malta – Industrial Property Registrations Directorate, Commerce Department.
The applicant can be an individual or individuals filing a joint patent.
If there are no problems, the patent will be granted to the applicant. Becoming the patentee, they will have the right to exclude others from reproducing, selling, or distributing the patented creation.
A patent is valid for a period of 20 years from the date of filing.
The maintenance fee is paid upon the third year and each subsequent year thereafter. The fee is to be paid by not later than the last day of the month of the prescribed due date.
Obtaining a patent through the EPO
The applicant can also obtain a patent through a European Patent designating Malta.
A European patent application designating Malta that has been accorded a filing date shall be equivalent to a regular national application.
However, it should be noted that if the language of the European patent is not English, the applicant needs to provide a translation of the documents within 3 months from the publication of the mention of the grant of the European Patent in the European Patent Bulletin.
Renewal fees in respect of a European patent are to be paid to the EPO.
You can see a list of Malta IP Firms here.