Maintain your patent or patent application

You must pay an annual fee by a given date to keep your patent in force or to avoid your application being terminated. You can pay the annual fee up to six months after the due date, but then you will have to pay the amount plus a 20% increase. Please note that if you do not pay the fee within that time

  • your patent will lapse and your patent rights will end, or
  • your patent application will be terminated and you cannot have it reinstated later.

A patent can be kept in force for 20 years from the filing date of the application. If the patent protects the active ingredients used in medicinal products or plant protection products, the term of patent protection can under certain conditions be extended. This extension is called Supplementary Protection Certificate, SPC, and you have to apply for it separately. Read more about SPC.

Pay the annual fees and respond to office actions

If you are not using an attorney or agent when applying for a patent, we will send you a reminder about the annual fee. It is however your responsibility to pay the annual fee on time.

You also have to maintain contact with us during the application process. If you do not respond to our office actions by the given deadline, or meet the requirements indicated in the office actions, your application will be dismissed, meaning that the application process ends.

Remember the priority year if you are planning to pursue your application in other countries

A patent granted in Finland only gives protection in Finland. It is common to apply for patent protection in other countries as well if you have business, customers or competitors there, but remember to apply in time.

The priority year starts from the filing date of your application – you can pursue patent protection in other countries based on your national Finnish patent application within 12 months from filing your initial application in Finland.

Read more about how to apply for a patent abroad.

Read more about priority.


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Latest update 16.06.2015