Thursday, 22 March 2012

Professional fees for IP services in Kenya

A useful review of the patent application process and office costs in Kenya has recently been published online (see details below). It explains the patenting process in simple terms for the benefit of laymen and identifies the forms that must be completed when filing an application with the Kenya Industrial Property Institute.  After listing official costs, the review adds:
"As regards legal fees, the Advocates (Remuneration) (Amendment) Order 2009 sets the minimum fee for professional services. In this case the professional service fee is determined by the order and by the quantity and complexity of the work involved".
This blogger suspects that, while practitioners are anxious to maintain viable IP practices and therefore have a clear interest in the setting of minimum fees, clients are more interested to know what the maximum is that they can be asked to pay for professional services.  In regulating IP fees, Schedule IV of the 2009 Order makes it look as though the minimum is also the maximum, since it appears to set a fairly precise and rigid fee structure for a large array of non-contentious services provided for the benefit of the client.  Can any reader from Kenya give further guidance on this?

Source: "Intellectual Property - Kenya: Patent application and review process", contributed to International Law Office by Anthony Gakuru (Njoroge Regeru & Company), 27 February 2012

1 comment:

Isaac said...

The 2009 order combines "registration" of trademarks with "registration" of patents, and refers to Schedule IV for fees related to such registration. But Schedule IV only provides fees for registration of trademarks.

The Kenyan patent law is not a "registration" system (like in South Africa), but rather a granting system (like in Europe). So I'm not sure if "registration" of a patent is a typo or if the 2009 order is merely referring to certain clerical aspects of patent prosecution.

I have spoke with numerous patent agents and lawyers in Kenya and none have mentioned a maximum set of fees associated with patent preparation. But, then, there has not been much preparation of patent applications by lawyers in Kenya...