Maiorana, P.C.

Michigan Patent Attorneys

Can I file my Patent Application in Canada?


Since our office is close to the international border, and the automotive industries, Tier 1 suppliers, Tier 2 suppliers and associated machine shops are located in and around both Detroit, Michigan and Windsor, Ontario, people sometimes ask if their invention can be filed in both the United States and Canada. The short answer is yes. The same basic patent application can be filed in both countries.

Filing patent applications in the Canadian Intellectual Property Office Canadian Intellectual Property Office is similar to filing patent applications in the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) with a few differences. The good news is that Canadian applications may be filed with the same specification and drawings as the US application. The Canadian applications may be written and filed in English, just like in the United States.

The Canadian application process is different in terms of fees. When Canadian applications are filed, just a filing fee must be paid to establish the Canadian filing date. If the inventor(s) qualify as a small entity, a Small Entity Declaration signed by each invention can be filed with the application to obtain a lower filing fee with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office.

Once the Canadian application is filed, an examination request and an examination fee must be filed within five years of the Canadian filing date before examination begins. An annual maintenance fee will also be payable starting two years from the Canadian filing date. This is similar to a maintenance fee in the U.S., except the U.S. maintenance fees are only due if a payent issues. There is no Canadian equivalent to a U.S. provisional application.

If a Canadian application becomes abandoned for failure to pay a maintenance fee or for any other reason, there is a one-year grace period available for reinstatement in Canada. However, a reinstated application loses entitlement to an expedited examination.

A Canadian patent has the same enforecement lifetime as an American patent, generally twenty years from the date of filing. A Canadian application filed after a corresponding US application may claim priority to that US application. The Canadian Patent Office will subsequently treat the application as if it were filed on the same day as in the USPTO.

You can always ask us for additional information.

  • John Ignatowski
  • March 2017

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