FOR IP PROFESSIONALS

Before you apply

If you have developed a new plant variety, you should consider applying for a Plant Breeder's Right (PBR) to protect it.

Basic research

Do some basic research to make sure your variety is new and distinctive and that you will be eligible. Search the PBR database to see if someone else has already bred your variety.

Deciding to apply for PBR

Application for PBR should be an integral part of your overall business strategy, together with factors such as profit potential, finance, production and marketing.

The PBR system is structured to enable you to make this decision before the major costs of registration are encountered. For specific assistance and advice, you can contact an IP professional. An accredited Qualified Person (QP) can help you with this decision and with the application process.

You can seek to register a variety yourself, though the expertise of a QP will be required for parts of the application process. Many applicants use the services of a QP for the entire application because of their extensive experience and familiarity with the process.

Cost

Filing Part 1 of the application for PBR is quite inexpensive and provides an initial assessment of whether or not your variety potentially meets the criteria for registration.

A full list is available of all fees relating to Plant Breeder's Rights.

Eligibility

Only new or recently exploited varieties can be registered. Check the eligibility criteria and make sure your plant variety is new by conducting your own searches (including checking the PBR Database).

Provisional protection: 12 months

Once Part 1 of the application is accepted, your plant variety is covered by provisional protection against infringement. You then have up to 12 months to further consider its commercial worth, resolve issues such as finance and licensing and decide if further effort in pursuing full PBR protection is worthwhile.

Exploiting your new variety prior to PBR

Before you apply, it is possible to exploit your new variety before making a PBR application provided this is done within strict time limits. Sales of the variety in Australia are allowed for up to 12 months before lodging an application. Sales overseas are allowed for six years for trees and grapevines (Vitis vinifera) or four years for other species.

Other forms of protection

You should consider other forms of IP protection, including patents and trade marks.

Last Updated: 06/3/2014

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