A patent can expire in the following ways –
- The patent has lived its full term i.e. the term specified by the patent act of the country. Generally it is 20 years from the date of filing.
- The patentee hs failed to pay the renewal fee. A patent once granted by the Government has to be maintained by paying annual renewal fee.
- The validity of the patent has been successfully challenged by an opponent by filing an opposition either with the patent office or with the courts.
An invention relating to a product or a process that is new, involving inventive step and capable of industrial application can be patented inIndia. However, it must not fall into the category of inventions that are non-patentable as provided under Section 3 and 4 of the (Indian) Patents Act, 1970.