A patent protects your new invention, whether it’s a product or a process. Once patented, you can take legal action to stop others from making, using, importing or selling your invention without permission. Patents generally last for 20 years. Advice can be taken from lawyers and/or specialist patent attorneys.
To obtain a patent, your invention must:
- Be new
- Not be known anywhere in the world prior to the date you make the application
- Involve an inventive step
- Be capable of being made or used in your industry
How to apply
In Scotland and the rest of the UK, you can apply for a patent at the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO). It typically takes around 18 months and if there are no objections, your patent will be published.
This scheme by the UK Government allows your company to benefit from a reduced 10% corporation tax rate on all profits attributed to patents in Scotland. Some types of similar intellectual property rights like data protection and plant variety rights may also be eligible for reduced tax under this scheme.