It has been nearly 20 years since the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) substantially changed government fees.  As all things become due with time, the government has initiated a plan to increase fees by approximately 25% effective January 1, 2024.  The exact amount of the fee will vary based on entity size (for patents) and initial base fee prior to increase.  CIPO’s website contains a complete listing of fee increases here.

RECOMMENDATIONS: Consider performing any fee-related actions prior to the new rules in order to save expenses before January 1, 2024.  This applies to Patents, Trademarks, Industrial Designs, Copyright.


PATENTS: Revision of Small Entity Definition – January 1, 2024

Currently the small entity definition is restricted to an entity with 50 employees or less.  Effective January 1, 2024, CIPO will broaden the definition of small entity to fewer than 100 employees.  An applicant who qualifies as a small entity enjoys a 50% reduction in government fees; thus, expansion of the small entity definition will make this discount available to more applicants.  Entity status is determined once for the lifetime of the patent property and is based on the size of the applicant as of the date of filing.

Applicants who were previously considered standard entities under the old rules but qualify as a small entity under the new rules with fewer than 100 employees as of the filing date of their application would be permitted to change their entity status to small after January 1, 2024 through submission of a small entity declaration.  Once the applicant changes to a small entity, all future fees may be paid at the small entity rate.  For those applicants that change from standard to small entity status, CIPO will not provide a retroactive refund for the difference in fees related to past fees paid.  Should you feel that you might qualify for such a change in entity status, please contact us.

RECOMMENDATIONS: Consider whether the applicant may qualify as a small entity under the new rules and delay any fee-provoking actions until after January 1, 2024, along with submission of a small entity declaration under the new rules to revert to small entity.