Published: 7 November 2011
The IPO currently runs a commercial patent search facility. At a time when the IPO is receiving an increasing number of applications for patents, and as searches of the kind provided by the Search and Advisory Service are available through a number of private sector providers, we have taken the decision to close this commercial search facility so that IPO resource can be concentrated on the delivery of our statutory search and application examination responsibilities.
On 6 October 2011, the Search and Advisory Service has therefore closed. We will honour any commitments to undertake work that have already been made. We will continue to offer Patent Informatics as a commercial service, but will no longer be able to provide patentability, freedom to operate (infringement) or validity searches. A list of other IP Offices who offer commercial patent services can be found at www.epo.org/searching/subscription/special-search.html, other commercial providers also exist within the UK.
The IPO Patents Opinion service is not a commercial service and therefore is not affected by this decision.
The IPO would like to thank all our customers for their business and apologise for any inconvenience this decision may cause.