Postdating

Thereafter the complete specification is converted to a provisional and further complete specification was being filed in respect of the complete specification (now converted to a provisional).

This can only be done in respect of a patent application which is accompanied by a complete specification in the first place and not of a complete specification which is filed in respect of an application which is accompanied by a provisional specification.

Accordingly, therefore, in future, the mechanism of extending the time for filing a complete specification by a period of six months when information is not available at the twelve months threshold, will not be available if the application is accompanied by a provisional specification.

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Section 9(1) addresses a common concern raised by most applicants – will the deadline for filing a complete specification pursuant to a provisional application be calculated from the original filing date or the post-dated date?

It is preferable if applicants file the complete specification within 12 months of the original filing date of the provisional application to avoid pitfalls of any kind that may jeopardize the validity of the application.

In any event postdating cannot be done for a period greater than six months from the date of filing of the parent application.

When a provisional specification is filed, the only method to improve upon the document beyond twelve months is to file a complete specification and postdate the application for a maximum period of six months.

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