Is it possible filing a patent with validity throughout the world? If yes, how can it be done and what is the cost?
Rather than a patent valid worldwide, there is a procedure that allows “booking” a patent practically in all the industrialised as well as many African, Asiatic and Latin American countries. It is called PCT; this comes from Patent Cooperation Treaty who first instituted it. It is not a unique patent valid worldwide, but a relatively economical way to file, with a single application, a request for patent and it is as if, simultaneously, this was deposited in all the indicated countries.
The PCT application is deposited at Geneva at the WIPO office, the World Intellectual Property Organization, either immediately or within a year from filing in Italy the national one. From then all the contracting countries will be notified of the application and a compulsory search of novelty will be done, after which the requestor will get a report with copies of the patents similar or resembling his. If the results are to be concerned about, an optional preliminary exam can be asked for; the office will then be able to offer an opinion on whether or not the patent could be granted.
This phase lasts about 30/31 months from the application date, after which it is necessary to move on to the national phases, i.e. asking each country of interest the granting of the patent country per country. The initial cost of the procedure is rather inexpensive, considered the wideness of the application, the fees are about € 3000.00, excluding the charges for the preparation of the documents and technical translations. There will be no more to be paid for 30/31 months; whilst for the entry in the national phases there will be another fee to be paid, variable according to each separate country.
At that point more than two years would have passed from first making the invention, therefore it would be easier to assess if and where it would be more convenient to get the patent.