Law - Contrary to Public Order

The PCT and its regulations prohibit inclusion in international patent applications of "expressions or drawings contrary to morality" and "expressions or drawings contrary to public order" (PCT Article 21(6) and PCT Rule 9.1). National and regional patent offices prohibit the patenting of subject matter that is contrary to public order. For example, it is the position of the USPTO that it will reject claims for inventions that are against public policy. As another example, European Patent Office (EPO) rules state, "Any invention, the publication or exploitation of which would be contrary to 'ordre public' or morality is specifically excluded from patentability." EPO rules also provide, however, that "Exploitation is not to be deemed to be contrary to 'ordre public' or morality merely because it is prohibited by law or regulation in some or all of the Contracting States."

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