Major changes are planned in the Swiss Patent Law.
The Federal Council has published a draft law announced in a press release. The public consultation period runs until 1 February 2021. The reform’s main points are as follows:
- Patent applications will be examined on their merits, i.e. on the basis of novelty and inventive step.
- Post-granting oppositions will be possible within nine months after grant, and may now also relate to the merits.
- Appeals in examination proceedings will be heard by the Federal Administrative Court; as in the case of the Federal Patent Court, it will henceforth be possible to appeal to judges with technical expertise appointed by parliament.
- A utility model will be available without substantive examination and with a maximum term of protection limited to 10 years (instead of 20 for the 20 patents).
- The utility model can be used in the patent box, just like the patent.