It would be standard practice that patent search for the sake of substantive examination to evaluate the patentability of technical solutions is a part of examination work during the process of patent applications. In the meantime, applicants may optionally have patent search conducted prior to filing to take the patentability of the relevant invention/utility solution into account and decide on or against filing of their patent applications or for other purposes.
Such patent search can be conducted by our firm ourselves (using various database and our own unique skills) or, from time to time, by means of a request for patent search filed to the National Office of Intellectual Property of Vietnam (IP Vietnam).
TYPES OF PATENT SEARCH
Though not specified in laws, there are essentially various types of patent search in Vietnam (search by priority number, patent status search, search by international application number, search by keyword, patent clearance search/FTO search, search by applicants/patentees, etc.):
Freedom-To-Operate (FTO) Patent Search/Clearance Search
This search (also “infringement search” or “clearance search”) is to determine whether such particular action as production or commercialization of products can be taken without infringing valid patent rights granted to others.
Considering the list of the revealed patents/patent applications, if any, we may determine which patents/patent applications are of most concern and evaluate any potential patent infringement risk. Such evaluation shall be based on claims of the relevant patents/pending patent applications and the product/process which is the subject of the search.
It would normally take around 5-7 working days from our receipt of instructions for this search to obtain relevant search results.
Patent Search By International Patent Classification (IPC)
This search is to identify all Vietnamese published patent applications/granted patents under specific international patent classification.
It would normally take around 2-4 working days from our receipt of instructions for this search to obtain relevant search results.
Patent Search By Names of Applicants or Patentees
This search is to find all Vietnamese published patent applications/granted patents filed/owned by an applicant/a patentee.
It would normally take around 2-5 working days from our receipt of instructions for this search to obtain relevant search results
Search by Keyword
This search is to identify all Vietnamese published patent applications/granted patents containing any word of interest.
Equivalent Patent Search
This search is to find whether there are any published patent applications/granted patents in Vietnam corresponding/equivalent to a subject patent application/patent filed/granted in any other country.
Prior Art Search
This search is to determine whether an invention is equivalent or identical with any prior art. Based on any found relevant documents, inventors/researchers can preliminarily evaluate the novelty and inventive step of their invention and then may decide on or against filing of a patent application in Vietnam.
Patent Search database
Patent search can be conducted based on various database:
PATENT SEARCH SCOPE
The patent search scope includes all Vietnamese published patent applications/granted patents as at the latest publication date, except for prior art search. As for prior art search, the patent search scope includes all published patent applications/granted patents and other non-patent documents found through the database which can be accessible up to the latest publication date.