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What is a Patent?

A patent is an exclusive rights granted by the state to the inventor for an invention for 20 years from the filing date. Invention is a novel, non obvious and industrially applicable solution to a specific problem in a field of technology. The grant of patent gives you the rights to make, use, sell, and offer for sale and import.

Examples of Patents

ARV drugs

Ballpoint pen

Method of using a Suspension Smelting Furnace, a Suspension Smelting Furnace, and a Concentrate Burner.

Filing of a patent
  • You fill Form 1 (Fill 3 Forms) Click here to see Form 1 guide
  • For Part IX on Form 1  Click here  (Description, Claims, Abstract &Drawings)
  • Request letter – This is application letter of a patent
  • Submit to the registrar application letter, attaching Form 1 and three copies of items shown in the checklist.

NB: Each of the things listed in the checklist should be written in a separate sheet.

Substantive examination is conducted in African Regional Intellectual Property Organisation (ARIPO) – Harare, Zimbabwe.

Publication and Grant of a patent

  • When the patent is accepted, you are invited to pay for grant and publication fees.
  • Write a letter of acceptance of payment fees.
  • After payment of the grant and publication fees, you will be issued with certificate.

Changes and Amendments of a Patent

Change of name of applicant

          Applicant can change the personal details from the initial application

          Notify the Registrar in writing and pay a prescribed fee (schedule of fees)

Change of address of applicant

Applicant can change the address details from the initial application

Notify the Registrar in writing and pay a prescribed fee 

Change of address for service

Applicant can change their agents from the initial application

Notify the Registrar in writing and pay a prescribed fee

Change of ownership of a Patent

Applicant can transfer their rights to a third party through the following ways:

 Assignment: The applicant transfers ALL the rights to the third party

 Notify the Registrar in writing, complete form 22, attach Deed of Assignment (Agreement) and pay a prescribed fee.

Filing of application maintenance

Renewal of a patent is every year (annually).You are supposed to pay maintenance fee every year even before you get certificate. 

  • Notify the Registrar in writing and pay the prescribed fee. (schedule of fees)  
  • Failure to renew a patent within a grace period of six (6) months from the date of expiry, a surcharge fee will be charged
  •  A Patent shall be deemed to be withdrawn if the owner fails to pay annual maintenance fees. There is no RESTORATION

Filing of cancellation (Withdrawn) of a patent

Notify the Registrar in writing that you wish to cancel your application.