Protecting a concept and ideas when starting your business is not an easy process, so you may run the risk of getting it wrong.
Host Koketso Sachane, standing-in for Eusebius McKaiser, spoke to IP lawyer from De Beer Attorneys, Elaine Bergenthuin, about the common misconceptions surrounding patents and copyright.
She explains the process of verification is not as simple as a Google search.
You can do a search beforehand to assess whether or not your idea is in fact novel. The patents office does not check this aspect.
When it comes to patents, the South African patent office does not do a search. If you file, for example, a patent application for a concept or idea, those sort of things will not be assessed by the patent office. When it comes to brand names, slogans, logos, those trademark applications are in fact assessed for novelty....Google isn't sufficient.— Elaine Bergenthuin , IP lawyer from De Beer Attorneys
She says you can either get a provisional patent that gives you 12 months of intellectual protection for an idea.
The second is a complete patent that lasts up to 20 years but is more expensive.
In terms of costs for a provisional patent you are looking at between R 8 000 and R 10 000 and for a complete patent, you are looking at about R 15 000 to R 20 000.— Elaine Bergenthuin , IP lawyer from De Beer Attorneys
Click on the link below to hear more from Elaine....