In Malaysia, a lesser extent invention can qualify as a utility innovation. Utility innovation has lesser requirements compared to a patent which needs to involve an inventive step. A utility innovation can be applied as long as it is new and industrially applicable. The utility innovation will be subjected to a substantive examination as a patent application.
There is no standard provision by WIPO for utility innovation.
Japan, Korea, China and Europe have a silmilar protection called utility model. Each of these territories have developed their unique protection for utility model. Terms of protection of six to fifteen years can be obatained according to the statutes of these territories. Now, each of these territories adopt a non-substantive examination principle. The non-substantive examination principle allows the inventor to quickly look for investors and launch their product in the market. With a utility model, the applicant can enforce his right quicker than a typical patent application routine.
US and UK have no provisions for utility model.
Europe is formulating a standard utility model. Shall Malaysia follow suite?