Patent applications in Belgium

In Belgium, patents are granted automatically, provided that the application meets certain formal requirements. However, for a patent to be considered valid, the invention must be new and inventive.

After filing, the application is examined with respect to formal requirements.
In a second stage, a novelty search is executed, and a novelty search report is sent to applicant for his information.
The patent application is published 18 months from the priority date, although applicant may request early publication.
A patent is granted automatically after publication. In any case, the grant will be postponed until after the search has been completed, and applicant has had an opportunity to file amendments as a reaction on the search report.
There are no opposition proceedings. Third parties may request annulment in court.
For keeping a patent in force, progressive maintenance fees are due each year. The first maintenance fee is due two years from the filing date (i.e. with respect to the third year after filing).

Documents and information needed
On filing, we need the following documents and information.
a) Text (description, claims, abstract) and drawings of the patent application, in French, German or Dutch (or English, in which case we will provide a Dutch translation). You may also appeal to us for drafting a patent application or for amending an existing text.
b) Full name and address of applicant(s).
c) Filing date, application number and country of priority application(s), if priority is to be claimed. A copy of the priority document may be filed later.

The following may be supplied later:
d) Full names and addresses of all inventors.
e) A deed of assignment, if any.
f) A power of attorney (authorization). You can download our power of attorney form.

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