Patents Act

(Original Enactment: Act 21 of 1994)

(15th March 1995)
An Act to establish a new law of patents, to enable Singapore to give effect to certain international conventions on patents.
[23rd February 1995]
Short title and commencement
1.—(1)  This Act may be cited as the Patents Act and shall come into operation on such date as the Minister may, by notification in the Gazette, appoint.
(2)  The Minister may appoint different dates for the coming into operation of the different Parts or provisions of this Act.
2.—(1)  In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires —
“Convention on International Exhibitions” means the Convention relating to International Exhibitions signed in Paris on 22nd November 1928, as amended or supplemented by any protocol to that convention which is for the time being in force;
“court” means the High Court;
“date of filing”, in relation to —
(a)an application for a patent made under this Act, means the date of filing that application by virtue of section 26; and
(b)any other application, means the date which, under the law of the country where the application was made or in accordance with the terms of a treaty or convention to which that country is a party, is to be treated as the date of filing that application in that country or is equivalent to the date of filing an application in that country (whatever the outcome of the application);
“designate”, in relation to an application or a patent, means designate the country or countries (in pursuance of the Patent Co-operation Treaty) in which protection is sought for the invention which is the subject of the application or patent;
“employee” means a person who works or (where the employment has ceased) worked under a contract of employment or in employment under or for the purposes of a Government department;
“employer”, in relation to an employee, means the person by whom the employee is or was employed;
“European Patent Convention” means the Convention on the Grant of European Patents;
“European Patent Office” means the office of that name established by the European Patent Convention;
“Examiner” means such person, organisation or foreign or international patent office or organisation as may be prescribed to whom the Registrar may refer questions relating to patents, including search and examination of applications for patents;
“exclusive licence” means a licence from the proprietor of or applicant for a patent conferring on the licensee, or on him and persons authorised by him, to the exclusion of all other persons (including the proprietor or applicant), any right in respect of the invention to which the patent or application relates, and “exclusive licensee” and “non-exclusive licence” shall be construed accordingly;
“filing fee” means the fee prescribed for the purposes of section 25;
“formal requirements” means those requirements designated as such by rules made for the purposes of section 28;
“international application for a patent” means an application made under the Patent Co-operation Treaty;
“international application for a patent (Singapore)” means an application of that description which, on its date of filing, designates Singapore;
“International Bureau” means the secretariat of the World Intellectual Property Organisation established by a convention signed at Stockholm on 14th July 1967;
“international exhibition” means an official or officially recognised international exhibition falling within the terms of the Convention on International Exhibitions or falling within the terms of any subsequent treaty or convention replacing that convention;
“inventor”, in relation to an invention, means the actual deviser of the invention and “joint inventor” shall be construed accordingly;
“journal” has the same meaning as in section 115(4);
“mortgage”, when used as a noun, includes a charge for securing money or money’s worth and, when used as a verb, shall be construed accordingly;
“Office” means the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore incorporated under the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore Act 2001;
[3/2001 wef 01/04/2001]
“Paris Convention” means the Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property signed at Paris on 20th March 1883;
“patent” means a patent under this Act and includes a patent in force by virtue of section 116(3);
“Patent Co-operation Treaty” means the treaty of that name signed at Washington on 19th June 1970;
“patented invention” means an invention for which a patent is granted and “patented process” shall be construed accordingly;
“patented product” means a product which is a patented invention or, in relation to a patented process, a product obtained directly by means of the process or to which the process has been applied;
“person” includes the Government;
“priority date” means the date determined as such under section 17;
“published” means made available to the public (whether in Singapore or elsewhere) and a document shall be taken to be published under any provision of this Act if it can be inspected as of right at any place in Singapore by members of the public, whether on payment of a fee or not; and “republished” shall be construed accordingly;
“register”, when used as a noun, means the register of patents kept under section 42 and, when used as a verb, means, in relation to any thing, to register or register particulars, or enter notice, of that thing in the register and, when used in relation to a person, means to enter his name in the register;
“registered patent agent” means a person whose name is entered in the register of patent agents kept in accordance with the rules made under section 104;
“Registrar” means the Registrar of Patents and includes any Deputy Registrar of Patents holding office under this Act;
“Registry” means the Registry of Patents established under this Act;
“right”, in relation to any patent or application, includes an interest in the patent or application and, without prejudice to the foregoing, any reference to a right in a patent includes a reference to a share in the patent;
“scientific adviser” means any person with any scientific qualification, any medical practitioner, engineer, architect, surveyor, accountant, actuary and any other specially skilled person.
[Act 40/95]
[Deleted by Act 40/95 wef 01/01/1996videS582/95]
(2)  Rules may provide for stating in the journal that an exhibition falls within the definition of “international exhibition” in subsection (1) and any such statement shall be conclusive evidence that the exhibition falls within that definition.
(3)  For the purposes of this Act, a matter shall be taken to have been disclosed in any relevant application within the meaning of section 17 or in the specification of a patent if it was either claimed or disclosed (otherwise than by way of disclaimer or acknowledgment of prior art) in that application or specification.
(4)  References in this Act to an application for a patent, as filed, are references to such an application in the state it was on the date of filing.
(5)  References in this Act to an application for a patent being published are references to its being published under section 27.
(6)  References in this Act to the Paris Convention or the Patent Co-operation Treaty are references to that convention or Treaty or any other international convention or agreement replacing it, as amended or supplemented by any convention or international agreement (including in either case any protocol or annex) to which Singapore is a party, or in accordance with the terms of any such convention or agreement and include references to any instrument made under any such convention or agreement.
(7)  The Arbitration Act [Cap. 10] shall not apply to any proceedings before the Registrar under this Act.
Application to Government
3.  This Act shall bind the Government.