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Intellectual Property

Nigeria
Smit & Van Wyk Patent, Trademark & Registered Designs

Nigeria Patents

Nigeria patents have a duration of 20 years from date of filing. Nigeria is a member of PCT and the Paris Convention (International treaty for the protection of Industrial Property). PCT National Phase entries provide a unified procedure for filing patent applications to protect intellectual property in each of its contracting states. 

Types of Patents:

  • Patents of Invention
  • National Phase PCT Application

Novelty:

Absolute novelty required.

Examination: 

Formal examination.

Patent Duration / Renewals: 

The patent has a duration of 20 years from date of filing. Annual renewal fees are payable in advance from the first anniversary of the filing date.

Patent Filing Requirements

Non-PCT applications:

  • Simply signed Power of Attorney (can be late filed)
  • Specification, claims, drawings and abstract with English translation (required upon filing)
  • Deed of assignment (can be late filed)
  • Certified copy of the priority document (if applicable) with verified English translation (must be filed within 3 months of the filing date)

PCT applications:

  • Simply signed Power of Attorney (can be late filed)
  • Specification, claims, drawings and abstract with English translation (required upon filing)
  • Published International application (required upon filing)
  • International Search Report and International Preliminary Report on Patentability (can be late filed)

International and Regional Systems

PCT

Nigeria is a signatory of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT). The Patent Cooperation Treaty ensures that by filing one international patent application, that applicants can simultaneously seek protection for an invention in other PCT member countries. A PCT National Phase entry provides a unified procedure for filing patent applications to protect intellectual property in each of its contracting states.

Paris Convention

Nigeria is a member of the Paris Convention where each contracting state must grant the same IP protection to nationals of other contracting states, and provides for the right of priority in the case of patents, trademarks and designs. The Paris Convention is an international agreement which helps creators ensure that their intellectual property is protected in other countries. It applies to IP in the widest sense as it covers patents, trademarks and industrial designs to name a few.

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