Types of Patent Applications

As we know about what is a patent, we can say that anything which can be used to solve the problem and new to everyone can be patented. There are different types of patent applications which can be filed by the inventor to get his invention patented so that he could use different rights of patentee over his invention for a certain period that is provided by the Patents Act, 1970.

In this article, we are going to discuss the different types of patent applications in India.

Different types of patent applications in India

There are several types of patent applications which can be used by the inventor as per his requirements. So now, let us discuss every type of patent application one by one.

Provisional application

A provisional application is a temporary application which is filed by the inventor to secure the priority date for his application. Section 9 of the Patents Act talks about the Provisional application. In the provisional application, the research of the invention may not be completed but the inventor has the apprehension that another person can take the priority on the same article on which he wants to apply for the patent. So, to take the benefit of priority date, the inventor can file a provisional application and secure the date of priority. After filing the Provisional application, the invention has the time to file the complete specification within twelve months from the date of such filing. This is the benefit of filing the Provisional application.

The invention has to file Form 2 with other supported documents such as Form 1, Form 3 etc., by mentioning that he is going to file the provisional application. It should be noted that there is a specific limit of 12 months to file the Complete specification and if the person fails to file the same within this period, then the application will be considered abandoned. But the remedy is provided in the Act itself as the person can go for the post date of the application which is also another concept of the Patent Act and sections 9 and 17 of the Patent Act deals with postdating of the application.

Ordinary application

Ordinary application is one of the common types of patent applications because is it being used in our country in almost 70-80% of applications. A patent application filed in India without claiming any priority date either in the convention country or from the earlier application filed or under process in the Patent Office is known as an Ordinary application. In simple words, if you want to take the rights over your patent in India only then you can use this type of application to secure your invention.

Convention application

An application filed in the patent office claiming a priority date from a similar application filed in one or more convention countries is known as a convention application.  Section 135 of the Patents Act, 1970 deals with the Convention application of the patent. The inventor has to file the Convention application within 12 months from the date of filing of a similar application in another convention country with the priority document otherwise it will be the ground for the revocation of the patent application.

PCT International Application

An application filed in India as a Receiving office Under a patent cooperation treaty is known as a PCT International application. With the help of PCT, the inventor can file the same application in more than 150 countries. PCT is a treaty done between 150+ countries and with the help of this treaty now the invention can file a single patent application to take the protection of his invention in many other countries. There will be the International Searching Authority ISA, International Search Report, International Preliminary Examination Authority IPEA which will help and examine your patent at the international level.

You can read the full article on Examination Process of a Patent Application.

PCT National application

After filing the PCT International application, the inventor has to file the PCT national phase application in the countries where he wants to protect his invention. This process is done within 30-31 months after filing the PCT International application.

Patent of addition

When an invention is a slight modification of an earlier invention for which the inventor has already applied or already has obtained the patent, the applicant can go for the patent of addition for that modification. Section 54 of the act deals with the patent of addition and it is a good practice to take the patent for the modification of the old invention The benefit to filing a Patent of addition is that the inventor is free to pay the renewal fee for the patent of addition and the term of the Patent of addition will be same as the term left of the original invention.

Divisional Application

When an invention files a patent application and the controller thinks that the invention covers more than one invention, then the controller may direct the inventor to divide that invention into two or more different inventions and file two or more two different applications.  The priority dates of both applications will be the same as the main invention. Section 16 of the act deals with Divisional application. Now the question will come to mind why there is a need to file two or more applications? Or why we cannot file one application for different patents at once?

It is because the act says that One application must contain only one invention. This means if you have two different articles which you need to be patented then you have to file two different applications for both.

After selecting the types of Patent applications, you can follow the process to file the patent application.

Types of Patent Applications FAQs

How many types of patent applications are in India?

There are 7 different types of patent applications in India which are, Provisional application, Ordinary application, Convention application, PCT International Application, PCT National application, Patent of addition and Divisional Application.

What is Ordinary application?

A patent application filed in India without claiming any priority date either in the convention country or from the earlier application filed or under process in the Patent Office is known as an Ordinary application.

What is the Patent of Addition?

When you have made any modification in your previous patent and you also want to secure that modification, then you can directly go for patent of addition. Section 54 of the Patents Act, of 1970 deals with patent of addition.


After discussing the different types of patent applications, I am pretty sure that now you know all these patent applications. The motive to make these different types of patent applications is to secure the interest of the inventor. For example, you can file PCT if you want to take the rights in different countries. You can go for a patent of addition if you have made some modifications to your previous invention. This would also benefit you in the renewal fees.

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