Last updated: 
22 November 2018

The Australian patent search can be a good place to start a search to see if patents exist for inventions similar to yours.  However, if you want to widen your search to overseas patents, you may consider using free online patent collections from some of the world’s main intellectual property (IP) offices.

World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)

The Patentscope database provides access to published international Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) applications in full text format. Information can be searched by general search terms, names of applicants, technology type, subject matter and many other search criteria in multiple languages.

United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)

USPTO database provides access to patents and published patent applications in the United States of America. The database includes patents from 1790 to present and published patents applications from 2001 to present.

European Patent Office (EPO)

Espacenet from the EPO offers access to patents from around the world. It includes English translations of patent specification in various languages.

Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand (IPONZ)

The IPONZ patent database provides access to patents and published patent applications in New Zealand.

United Kingdom Intellectual Property Office (IPO)

Ipsum is an online service that lets you search for information on United Kingdom (UK) patent applications and granted patents.

Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO)

CIPO's patent database provides access to patents issued in Canada. Searches can be made in either English or French.

Japan Patent Office (JPO)

Japan’s Platform for Patent Information provides access to information on patents issued in Japan since 1976. English translations of specifications are also available.

China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA)

The CNIPA database provides access to information on patents issued in China. The database also provides English translation of patent specifications.

Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO)

The KIPRIS database includes information on Korean patents and patent applications since 1996. You can also access English translations of patent specifications.

Other intellectual property offices

We have provided links to the above sites that may be of use to you. We do not endorse the views expressed, or the facts presented, on these sites. Further, we do not endorse any commercial products that may be advertised or available on these sites.

Each site provides its own user support and we are not responsible for any database outages.

Please note this is not an exhaustive list of IP offices. For any specific assistance or to seek advice you can contact an IP professional.