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Examinations on the merits were not carried out for utility model applications filed before October 1 2014.
In contrast to invention applications, where examination on the merits starts only after filing an examination request, examination on the merits for utility model applications begins automatically once the formal examination is complete.
A Patent Cooperation Treaty application may enter the Russian national phase as a utility model application.
A utility model application and an application for invention for the same subject matter may be filed simultaneously.
In Russia, only a device may be protected as a utility model.
Moreover, due to recent changes in the practice of the Patent and Trademark Office (PTO), not all devices can be protected.
The plan comes after China announced in July, before the situation in the South China Sea had fully escalated, that Beijing and Moscow planned to join forces in a “routine” naval exercise.
Joint Sea-2016 follows in the wake of increased pressure by the United States demanding that China adhere to the ruling of The Hague international tribunal invalidating Beijing’s longstanding claim to the South China Sea through which some trillion of shipborne trade passes through each year and under which lies some of the world’s largest deep water oil and natural gas deposits.
Amendments are now possible only at the examiner’s request.
Moreover, amendments are acceptable only if they do not change the essence of the utility model – that is: A utility model application filed after October 1 2014 is subject to both formal examination (in which the PTO checks that the formal requirements have been fulfilled) and examination on the merits (where the protectability and patentability of the utility model is examined).
Only devices which are either a single unit or consist of several units mechanically connected by assembly operations and have functional-constructive unity (ie, an assembled unit that does not have separated parts) are elgible for protection.