How free/interested Registered Patent Agents if hired to become Patent Examiners, may not only reduce training time/cost but may increase productivity of IPO (of course India) as well
It has been observed that many of the registered Patent Agents, who are technically qualified, are either jobless or have scarcity of work (if self-employed) or have left Patent/IPR industry to earn their livelihood.
Since patent filing in India has been on rise for the last few years, India Patent Office recently hired new patent examiners to successfully discharge the role and responsibility of patent examiners. Also we know that India Patent Office has been accredited for ISA and IPEA, which may also require patent examiners in large numbers to carry out the prior art search and analysis for patent examination process as per International patent system.
Moreover patent examination is very complex and specialized process which may require not only sound technical knowledge and analysis skill but also sound patent law knowledge along with hands on experience on science/technology information retrieval system.
It may be said that the duty of a Patent Examiner is quite different and challenging in nature because its a position which requires sound knowledge of patent law and information retrieval skill, and both had never been part of education of the youth of our country. Thus training of those new new patent examiners (particularly who are new to IPR field) is a challenge because it may require investing huge time and resources to train those new examiners. Since new learning and its practical implementation with quality output takes uncertain timeline, so another challenge may be to prepare those new human resources to produce regular quality work.
In light of the aforesaid discussion, we think that it would be an appreciable step and unprecedented move if IPO could consider utilizing available competent human resources (registered patent agents) and hire them as patent examiners as our registered patent agents have not only sound technical knowledge but also have knowledge of patent law and sound information retrieval skill. We believe that training cost and time on registered patent agents to work as patent examiners would require fraction of that require for others (who are new to patent law and information retrieval system). And also we are confident that registered patent agents can learn quickly and produce quality/desired output and increase productivity of IPO as well as our country.
The PAAi wishes to request the DIPP/IPO to consider registered Patent Agents for the position of Patent Examiners in all future requirements and to hire them directly or by providing opportunity for direct interview. The PAAi would also request the DIPP/IPO to exempt the Registered Patent Agents from appearing in the written examination as they already have been tested by the same office.
The PAAi would like to invite comments/suggestions in this regard from the members. All comments/suggestions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org