Patent protection abroad
Patents are only valid in the country for which they have been granted (principle of territoriality). Patents granted by the DPMA have effect in the Federal Republic of Germany. You have a choice of several routes for obtaining patent protection of your invention in other countries.
If you wish to obtain protection for your invention in just a few countries in addition to the country of first filing, it might be useful to file individual applications in the respective countries. The Innovaccess site provides guidance and information on this issue concerning the Member States of the European Union.
If you seek broad regional or worldwide protection for your invention, you can file a European or an international patent application. This is an efficient way to request patent protection in many countries, by filing a single application. However, there is no such thing as a ‘world patent’.
The European Patent Office carries out a specific European patent grant procedure.
Information on this procedure is available on the homepage of the European Patent Office at http://www.epo.org.
International patent applications under the PCT
It is also possible to file an international patent application under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT).
Information on the PCT procedure is available on the homepage of WIPO at