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Korea: Additional periods for divisional filings and claiming exemption from public disclosure

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An amendment of the Korean patent law will enter into force on 1 August 2015 which provides applicants and additional period for filing divisional applications. According to the revised regulations, applicants may file a divisional application also within three months from the decision to grant. Before, divisional applications were only permitted during the periods for amendments or within 30 days from the decision of rejection.

In addition, the amendment stipulates additional periods for filing a request for exemption from public disclosure. In general, if an applicant publishes an invention, he/she may still file an application for a patent or utility model within a period of 12 months from public disclosure. In that case, the previous publication is not regarded as novelty destroying provided that the applicant files a "request for exemption from public disclosure". However, according to the previous regulation, this request had to be submitted at the time of filing the patent/utility model application. According to the amended law, this request may also be submitted during the examination procedure and even within three months from the decision to grant.

Both new stipulations will affect all patents and utility models filed on or after 1 August 2015.

For further information, please refer to KIPO's notifications of patent law amendments of 11 February 2015 (in Korean only).

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