Posted on 16/1/2018

Changes to UK Patent Fees

The official fees for UK patents and applications are increasing from 6th April 2018.

From 6 April 2018 official fees for UK patents and applications are increasing, the first significant increase in many years. The increases are listed below. As has been the UK Intellectual Property Office’s practice in the past fees are reduced if the related forms are filed online, and the search fee is reduced for international patent applications entering the UK national phase.

Online filings

Patent FeesOld FeeNew Fee
Application fee£20£60
Search fee£130£150
Search fee for international application entered into the UK 





Substantive Examination fee£80£100

Paper filings

Patent FeesOld FeeNew Fee
Application fee£30£90
Search fee£150£180
Search fee for international application entered into the UK 





Substantive Examination fee£100£130


Renewal fees

YearOld FeeNew Fee
5th year£70£70
6th year£90£90
7th year£110£110
8th year£130£130
9th year£150£150
10th year£170£170
11th year£190£190
12th year£210£220
13th year£250£260
14th year£290£300
15th year£350£360
16th year£410£420
17th year£460£470
18th year£510£520
19th year£560£570
20th year£600£610

Given the increased difference between the new online and paper filing fees, the UKIPO is further incentivising the use of the online filing system.

In addition to the increases, the UKIPO is also creating a number of new official fees:

  • a surcharge of 25% will be applied to the application fee if it is paid after the date of filing the application (£15 for online filings, £22.50 for paper filings);
  • an excess claims fee of £20 for each claim over 25 is payable when the search fee is due;
  • an excess pages fee of £10 for each page over 35 is payable when the substantive examination fee is due; and
  • a grant fee, comprising any excess claims or pages fees not yet paid, will be payable for applications within two months of the intention of grant notification.

In relation to the grant fee, fees will be due on grant only if additional claims over 25 or pages over 35 have been added during prosecution. Otherwise an application will proceed automatically to grant (as now).

The surcharge on the application fee gives an incentive to always pay the application fee on filing, while the introduction of the excess claims and pages fees appears to be an attempt to reduce the length of applications and/or help cover the additional cost of examining longer applications with more claims – and is similar to the approach taken by the European Patent Office.

We already file documents on line at the UKIPO wherever possible to take advantage of fee savings. It will now make sense to keep the number of claims and pages of patent applications below the excess fee thresholds where appropriate. That said, official fees for UK patents continue to represent very good value and any additional costs incurred in excess claims or pages fees are likely to be easily justified where seeking best protection for an invention necessitates exceeding the thresholds.

Note that it will be possible in some circumstances to avoid paying an increased fee by paying a fee early, notably renewal and substantive examination fees.

If you would like any advice on the changes or on any other aspects of filing a patent application, please contact us.