Patent information for patent professionals

Last checked on:
29 July 2022
Published on:
24 March 2021

Are you a patent attorney, patent office employee, lawyer, judge or policymaker with an interest in intellectual property? Or do you deal with patent law in some other way? Find out what the Netherlands Patent Office can do for you.

Patent legislation

In the Netherlands, patents are protected by law. The relevant laws are the Dutch Patents Act 1995 (Rijksoctrooiwet 1995) and the accompanying Implementation Decree. International conventions (agreements) have made the patent systems in different countries more alike. This means that the procedure to apply for and maintain a patent is generally the same in every country.

As of 1 June 2023, the unitary patent is a new choice following the granting of your European patent. The new unitary patent is a single patent for 17 European member states.

Notification re-used patent applications

As of 1st September, 2022 the Netherlands Patent Office shall no longer process re-used patent applications on the basis of abuse of law. A 're-used' patent application is a copy, or only a literal translation, of a previously published application, where priority has not been claimed or cannot be claimed.

Legislation for working as a patent attorney

The profession of patent attorney is a regulated profession. To be included in the register of patent attorneys, you must meet certain conditions. Read more about the conditions for registration.

Following the fundamental principles of the European internal market, European Union citizens may exercise their profession on a temporary or permanent basis in another Member State. Read more about the legislation for working as a patent attorney in another EU-member state.

Patent case law

Sometimes there is a dispute about the content, interpretation or legal validity of a patent. Parties who believe that a patent or patent owner has put them at an unfair disadvantage may decide to go to court. Parties who feel their patent rights have been violated may do so as well. The court’s decisions in previous cases make up what is known as case law. Case law can play an important role in future disputes.

Patent literature and publications

On our patent information portal, you will find lots of literature and publications you can use. Most of the information is in Dutch, but some information is also available in English. Our quarterly newsletter, Bijblad, for instance. The Dutch-language literature includes reports from periodic administrative consultations, as well as our main magazine, De Industriële Eigendom. Have a look at the English-language information on the patent information portal. Or sign up for our newsletter.

If you need more information on how to apply for a patent in the Netherlands, please contact the public information office.

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