Canadian patent law

Canadian Patent Law

Canadian patent law

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Canadian patent law is the legal system regulating the granting of patents for inventions within Canada, and the enforcement of these rights in Canada.


A patent is a government grant that gives the inventor and his or her heirs, executors and assigns, the exclusive right within Canada, during the term of the patent, to make, use and/or sell the invention claimed in the patent, subject to adjudication.Patent Act, s. 42.

The granting of Canadian patents is within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Canadian federal government and is governed by the federal Patent Act, the Patent Rules, and various international treaties and the regulations thereunder. The enforcement of Canadian patents is the responsibility of the Canadian Federal Court, or the Courts of the Canadian provinces.


For patent applications filed prior to October 1, 1989, the patent expires 17 years after the patent issues. For patent applications filed on or after October 1, 1989, the patent expires 20 years after the patent application was filed.

Definition of a patentable invention

To be considered patentable, an invention must pass three criteria: novelty, non-obviousness and utility.


To be patentable, an invention must be novel. That is, the invention must not have been described or claimed in a previously filed third party Canadian patent application, and must not have been previously publicly disclosed by a third party, anywhere...
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