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11.1 Patents


Patents are basically a unique registration method that allows inventors to disclose, and freely discuss inventions, while protecting the time and effort they invested in development. They generally have 17 years to profit from the patent.


A patent can only be given for something physically planned, or demonstratable. [Permutit Co. v. Borrowman] These inventions must also have novelty and skill [General Electric Company, Limited v. Fada Radio, Limited]


Patent rights may be assigned or transferred legally.


Patents may be infringed, if this occurs the patent holder may sue for damages (typically lost profit)


Generally patent developed by employees don't become the property of the employer. [Willard's Chocolates Ltd. v. Bardsley] In some cases the employee is specifically paid to be creative. In these cases the employer will hold the patent rights. [British Reinforced Concrete Engineering Co. Limited v. Lind]


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