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How Complex Are Cannabis Patent Rules?

How Complex Are Cannabis Patent Rules?

It is already a known fact that cannabis is legal in many states across the United States and in countries such as Canada and Uruguay. In most of the states, residents enjoy medical cannabis while in other states; the residents enjoy both medical cannabis and recreational cannabis. There are some states that have not yet legalized cannabis and for that reason, it still remains legal.

In fact, cannabis is going to always be illegal to the federal government, whether a state has accepted it as legal or not. However, in the grand scheme of things, cannabis has a lot of monetary value and potential. If you are interested in getting into the industry, then you have to be knowledgeable about the cannabis patent rules. If you are hearing about patents for the first time, let us discuss.

The Patents

If you want to have rights of exclusion as it relates to preventing others from creating, using and selling your cannabis products, then you would consider inventing your own cannabis patent rules. If you were to invent a cannabis product, then the cannabis patient would provide you with the protection against people who would want to take advantage of your hard work. However, to receive a cannabis patent or any other for that matter, your product has to be useful and it has to be new. Those are the initial rules. In other words, the product must not have already been in existent and should not be obvious. The information related to the product must be publicized or the application might be denied by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

There are different types of patients to consider, but they fall in three main categories including utility, design and plant. As it relates to cannabis, plant and utility patents are the most applicable. The utility cannabis patent relates to the product creation, the machine, the process and prevention of others to make the product without receiving authorization from the original creator. Some of the things that would constitute issues with violating a cannabis patent are the methods of preparing, ingredients used, lighting, formulations and the growth process. The plant and strain itself is protected by a cannabis patent. Therefore, if someone wants to create a similar strain, it cannot be too close to yours. For example, the plant specimen could not exist already in nature because the patent rules do not permit you to patient something that is natural.

The Complexities

As it relates to any other product, plant or thing, there are certain complexities that exist with a cannabis patent. According to the federal government, cannabis is still not legal and so it makes it difficult to consider patenting across the board and it can get complicated. Plant patents might not be realistic since you have to provide proof that you own all the rights and that is hard to prove. Utility patents are complex, but as it relates to cannabis, you may be able to pull this one off. For example, a cannabis book would be more feasible to patent. If you are trying to produce a product that requires lab testing, then you would have to provide a specimen of your test. If you do receive a cannabis patent in the United States, it does not cover you worldwide. You would have to apply for a cannabis patent in other countries. If not, then your product will be vulnerable to theft and there is no legal recourse for that.

What It All Means

With a cannabis patent, you will own the rights to the machines, products and procedures used for development. However, you do not have the rights to cannabis distribution. The federal government still thinks that it is illegal. All the patent does is to prevent anyone from creating your product.

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