Assistance with filing a patent covers a portion of the costs incurred by patent applicants (fees and taxes), up to the moment that the patent is issued (including national validation fees for European patents). The assistance comprises three types of intervention:
- Filing: this first section (PATDE) concerns the filing of one or more priority applications with a national (e.g. Belgian) or international (e.g. European) administration, along with an application for official research.
- Extension: this second section (PATEX) concerns the formalities that follow the initial filing, after analysis of the research report, and procedures with a view to territorially extending the protection, by invoking the right to priority and obtaining approval in the designated countries. This section may be requested while the approval process is ongoing and regardless of whether the first section (PATDE) has been requested or not.
- Opposition: this section (PATOP) concerns the formalities that arise from European opposition from a third party, as it pertains to a patent that was subject to PATEX aid.
The subsidy may represent between 15 and 50% of all patent costs (fees and taxes), which are invoiced by a patent agent who is approved by the European Patent Office (EPO) or by the Belgian Patent Office (OPRI).
SMEs that are not in financial difficulty according to the European Directive (see practical guide) and which have at least one business unit in the Walloon region.
How can I contact the department who made the decision?
You may contact the administrative department that made the decision at any time, independently of the appeal procedures outlined below, notably to:
- obtain additional explanations concerning the decision;
- complete your initial application with elements that are not known by the administration;
- communicate the reasons behind your dispute.
You must contact the following department:
SPW Économie, Emploi, Recherche
Département de la Recherche et du Développement technologique
Direction de l’accompagnement et de la Sensibilisation
Place de la Wallonie, 1 (bât. III) to 5100 NAMUR (JAMBES)
Phone: +32 (0)81 33 44 80-84
This free process is not subject to any specific formalities and does not suspend the periods for filing an appeal. The absence of a response from the administration does not constitute acceptance of your request.
HOW TO FILE AN APPEAL
Unless the dispute can be viewed as relating to a subjective right – in which case only courts of law and legal tribunals have jurisdiction – an appeal may be submitted to the State Council, in accordance with the procedures outlined below.
Request for cancellation
Cancellation of the decision may be requested by filing a request with the State Council, either:
- electronically to https://eproadmin.raadvst-consetat.be ;
- with a signed and dated registered letter to:
Section du Contentieux administratif
Rue de la Science, 33
You must submit your request within 60 calendar days from the date of notification for the disputed decision.
In your request, you must indicate the “motives” of your appeal, that is, the legal rights that have been infringed by the decision and the way in which they have been infringed.
Request for suspension
Sending a cancellation request does not suspend the effects of the decision.
If an emergency arises which is incompatible with the processing of the case, and if a serious argument is manifestly likely to lead to the cancellation, you may file a request to suspend the decision with the State Council.
The request for suspension may be submitted before, at the same time as, or after sending the request for cancellation.
In exceptional cases, and under specific conditions, you may also request the suspension of the decision in cases of extreme emergency.
Requests for cancellation and suspension requests are only valid if they contain certain annexes and information. Reference is made to the coordinated laws and decrees mentioned below, which are available at http://www.raadvst-consetat.be (“procedure” section).
Each requesting party must pay a fee of €200 (amount as of 9 January 2017), using a transfer form that will be sent to the party after the appeal is received. Payment is not currently subject to any deadline and the payment of the sum may be made at any time before the closure of the dispute.
Find out more: laws on the State Council, coordinated on 12 January 1973, Regent Decree of 23 August 1948 determining the procedure before the administrative disputes department of the State Council, Royal Decree of 5 December 1991 determining interlocutory proceedings before the State Council, which are available at http://www.raadvst-consetat.be (“procedure” section).
- The invention must relate to a profitable industrial or commercial use in the Walloon region;
- The company undertakes to add value to the patent(s), in line with the region’s interests regarding technological innovation and economic development;
- The company must be in good financial standing and be able to find financing for the current and expected future needs of the project.