Preserving intellectual property rights is vital for fostering innovation
across a myriad of fields, spanning from science and technology to the realms of
creativity. In an age where AI-generated content saturates the internet,
safeguarding human intelligence and creativity is of paramount importance.
Surprisingly, AI can serve as a potent ally in expediting and streamlining the
process of securing patent protection, contrary to the common perception of it
being a threat to original thinking.
The Argument for Integrating AI in the Patent Procedure:
Traditionally, the process of patent research has been a laborious and
time-intensive endeavour. On an average patent prosecution involves multiple
rounds of back-and-forth between the patent office and the inventor and
submitting the requisite documentation or amendments to establish the uniqueness
of a patent can often consume several years, potentially rendering the patent
obsolete in a rapidly evolving market.
AI offers a transformative solution by significantly accelerating the patent
search and application process. A well-designed algorithm can swiftly scan
patent data across various categories, identifying both existing patents and
non-patented works that bear strong resemblances to the patent under
consideration. Notably, AI returns search results within minutes with increasing
accuracy and recall, thereby reducing the risk of application rejections and
protecting applicants from potential legal disputes.
AI can also swiftly summarize complex technical documents related to patents,
sparing patent lawyers the arduous task of deciphering such documents. AI based
patent inspection and drafting tools can assist attorneys by helping them speed
up the drafting process and also reduce the likelihood of errors in it.
Additionally, AI driven research platforms can enable the creation of
centralised data environments that facilitate secure collaboration among
stakeholders, thereby expediting workflow. All of these advancements
substantially reduce administrative costs and can save numerous hours each week.
Challenges Posed by AI Integration in Patent Law:
The implementation of AI in any business domain raises legitimate concerns and
questions. The foremost concern relates to privacy, as companies question
whether the AI is learning from user generated data such as past searches or
user actions. There is also the risk of bias in patent search results, a
consequence of AI algorithms being only as reliable as the data used to train
Biased data can yield unpredictable results and it may not be easy to identify.
For example, an algorithm prioritised for cpu-effectiveness may inadvertently
compromise the accuracy or fairness of the search depth and thereby affect the
It is imperative to acknowledge that humans will always play a crucial role in
patent law. While AI excels in speed and accuracy during the search phase, it
cannot substitute for the expertise and perspective that human patent lawyers
bring to the table. The formulation of a patent claim, for instance, requires
the insight of an experienced patent lawyer and a professional, authentic tone
that AI tools like ChatGPT have yet to replicate. Furthermore, AI search results
are not infallible, necessitating human patent teams to verify research, assess
potential patent infringements, and adjust applications accordingly.
The Future Impact of AI as a creator on Patent Law:
AI's ubiquity in our daily lives will continue to grow. With AI already involved
in coding applications and composing music, it is conceivable that many of the
products and services we use could eventually be the result of artificial
This has prompted speculation that current patent laws, which recognize only
humans as inventors or creators, may need to be reevaluated. As AI's
contributions proliferate, there will be increasing pressure to revise laws to
accommodate "artificial inventors" and to define situations where AI is
substantially or wholly involved in the innovation process.
Some forward-thinking entities have recognized this paradigm shift and are
proactively embracing it. For instance, the United States Patent and Trademark
Office (USPTO) has established an AI and Emerging Technology Partnership to
explore the role of AI in innovation and its potential for driving economic
prosperity. Additionally, Australia's federal court has ruled that an AI system
can be designated as an inventor on a patent application, in accordance with the
Patents Act of 1990. As AI-generated inventions gain prominence and society
increasingly relies on AI contributions, more such rulings are likely to emerge
As AI's influence and capabilities continue to expand, its role in innovation
will become increasingly significant. Consequently, we can expect to witness
adjustments in patent laws that accommodate inventions originating from AI while
preserving the distinct creative and intellectual endeavours unique to humans.
It is essential to remain vigilant as the full extent of AI's capabilities is
yet to be realised, and patent lawyers must remain well-informed about its
applications and potential consequences. By acknowledging the changing AI
landscape and embracing a shared commitment to recognizing the efforts put into
innovation, the patent ecosystem can adapt to serve the interests of all
Written By: Manish Sinha, Founder & CTO, PatSeer