Three types of Patents
Utility patents may be granted to anyone who invents or discovers any new and useful process, machine, article of manufacture or composition of matter or any new and useful improvement thereof
Design Patents may be granted to anyone who invents a new, original and ornamental design for an article of manufacture.
Plant Patent May be granted to anyone who invents or discovers and asexually reproduces any distinct and new varieties of Plants
Types of Patents filed with Patent Offices
During examination procedure, patent application can be divided in two or more divisional applications if it has consisted of more than one invention or if does not fulfill the condition of unity of invention. Each new application retains the same priority date as the original patent application. Divisional Application can be filed before sealing of Patent.
Continuation Patent Application
Continuation Patent Application can be used eg. for correcting formal errors within the priority year. It is a later application filed after an earlier patent application for the same invention was disallowed. The continuation application retains the same priority date as the original patent application. A continuation application must be filed before the first application becomes abandoned. Continuation application can be filed between notice of allowance and publication.
Continuation-in-Part (CIP) Patent Application
In the US, the applicant can file a continuation in part application in order to introduce new improvements, not covered in the original parent application. This can be done anytime while the patent is pending. A CIP application always have several priority dates. The original part of invention already covered in the parent application retains the old priority while the new matter gets the filing date of the CIP application as their priority date. The CIP applications are very common in the US. Elsewhere it is not possible to add new material to the pending patent application otherwise than by filing a new application before the previous application has become public.
Patent of Addition
Patent of Addition May be applied for improvement in or modification of an invention for which a patent has already been applied for or granted.