Judgment of the sole paragraph of Article 40 of the Brazilian Patent Law

4 May 2021

Justice Toffoli proposes to stop the extension of the term for all patents because he considers it unconstitutional.

4 May 2021

Continuing the trial of the process that questions the constitutionality of the sole paragraph of Article 40 of the Patent Law, the Associate Justice of the Supreme Federal Court (STF), Dias Toffoli, reaffirmed this Thursday, April 29, his position contrary to the rule that provides for the extension of the term of patents granted by the BRPTO (INPI).

Although the reading of his vote is expected to end only next week, the Associate Justice has already anticipated how he will position himself. The minister will continue to read his vote at the session next Wednesday (May 5).

Toffoli suggests extending the effects of the decision and blocking the forecast for an extension for all patents, and not just pharmaceuticals and equipment for health use.

If Toffoli’s position is confirmed by the ministers of the Supreme Court, in most cases, the benefit of the extension will no longer apply to requests made to the BRPTO after the Court’s decision, without affecting the authorized patents.

However, for pharmacists and equipment for use in health, the Associate Justice Toffoli proposes that the extension of the deadlines also cease to apply to patents already granted. This retroactive effect would also apply to ongoing lawsuits that discuss the constitutionality of this rule.

The outcome of the trial will depend on the position of the majority of the Court, which will vote next week.

During the session, Toffoli argued that the regular term of patents already meets the requirements of the Agreement on Aspects of Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), closed within the scope of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

The Associate Justice of the Supreme Federal Court also argued that the extension provided for in the law ends up, in practice, generating variable terms for patents.

Rogerio Rovetta

Rogerio Rovetta

Patent Engineer. Brazilian office

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