A Brief Guide to Patent Translation

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The globalised and interconnected markets make it imperative for business owners to account for international territories when it comes to IP protection. Given that innovation is the key to success in a highly competitive scenario, safeguarding it is of paramount importance. Patents are the solution when it comes to preserving your invention, but their scope is limited to the country where they are granted. Competing and thriving in a global economy means that you need the exclusive rights conferred by a patent in foreign markets as well. And to achieve this, patent translation is a crucial tool. 

Table of Contents

What is Patent Translation? 

Patent translation is the process of translation of patents documentation into another language. Patent specifications, lawyer’s correspondence, office actions, and other related documents that are mandatory for patent filing constitute patent documentation. Each country has their own language for patent filing mandated by law. 

The documentation of patents is done in a unique writing style with the usage of technical terms that necessitate seeking the services of an expert translator. Only someone with an in-depth knowledge of the language and legal terminology is competent to perform the complex translations of patents. It is therefore essential to hire services of trusted translators with proficiency in the language as even the slightest error may lead to a rejection of the patent application.  

When to Seek Patent Translation Services

The need for translation of patents arises when a business seeks to protect its patented technology in a foreign market. Per the WIPO patents are territorial in nature, i.e., they hold legal value only in the country of application. Hence, the patent filing process needs to be followed in the country of interest, in their language and by adhering to their regulations. This demands the act of patent translation.  

If your patent has been filed in English, then it makes the process for patent application easier as a large number of countries accept English as the language of documentation. USA, Canada, India, and the EPO (European Patent Office) accept English as the language for patent filing. Thus, by drafting in the English language you may save significantly on costs. 

Countries like the UAE, Latin American countries, Russia, China etc., require the documentation to be in their respective languages. Yet, translating the documents into English and Spanish will offer substantial coverage in many countries around the world.  

Types Of Translations

The fields of translations are of two types: filing translations and information translations. It is important to understand the difference between the two so you can make the right choice in choosing among them. The prime distinguishing factor between the two is their usage and audience. Both the fields of translations are equally crucial and hiring a certified translator should be preferred.  

This refers to the patent translations that will be submitted for official purposes by the patent office. This translation will serve as a record for your patent and will serve legal professionals, patent officials, and patent licensees, who will be involved in the filing and examination process. It is therefore essential that this document is in a simple and precise language in order to convey the content clearly. 

Information Translations are required for legal usage as evidence in court proceedings. They contain the details mentioned in already filed patents and are thus expected to be as close to the original filing as possible.  

Why Opt for High-Quality Patent Translations?

The language used in patent documentation is as critical as the invention itself. If you are unable to clearly state the objectives and usage of your invention it may become a hindrance to obtaining a patent. Incorrect or poor-quality translations can have an adverse impact on your chances of securing a patent. Ensuring that your translated content is high quality is extremely important because: 

  • It will avert any delays due to rejection.  
  • It helps avoid the expenses of re-examination or corrections. 
  • Idea-thefts are minimized if all details are clearly spelled out and covered in the scope of the patent.  

Benefits of Hiring a Professional Patent Translator

 A professional translator holds wide knowledge of patent translations owing to their lingual expertise and years of experience in the field. If your patent documents are error-free, precise, and accurately translated then it increases your chances of securing a patent quickly.  


Translating a patent document on your own is both complex and time-consuming. Given the hectic pace of globalisation, it is best to not waste precious time and allow someone to imitate the product abroad. Experienced translators are adept at getting the work done speedily and professionally.  

Poor translations may prompt the patent office to reject the application. Once this happens you have to spend additional time, effort, and money on hiring a new translator and paying a re-examination fee to the patent office. Therefore, it is best to not cut costs and hire only the most skilled and qualified translators.  

An erroneously translated document can have disastrous legal consequences for your business. To avoid facing this situation seeking the services of an accredited translator is recommended.  


As discussed above, patent translation is the need of the hour for successful business expansion. Therefore, the importance of hiring the right translator is key to ensuring a flawless experience of securing a patent in a foreign market. Do remember to compare prices and check credentials and expertise before you pick the right professional translator.  

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