Patents in Sweden and abroad
There are different routes to take when you want to protect your invention with a patent. Patent protection is territorial – a Swedish patent is only valid in Sweden and you have to apply for patents in other countries. Your need for foreign patents depends on, among other things, if there is an export market for your invention and if you are going to keep the patent or sell it on.
If the invention is intended mainly for the Swedish market, a Swedish patent might be enough. Be aware then that anyone has the right to manufacture, sell or use your invention abroad.
An alternative is to invest directly in an international or European application, bypassing the national Swedish application route. That can be advantageous, for example, if you are sure that your invention is new and that the main market for it is not in Sweden. An international application (PCT application) can lead to protection in around 140 countries, including Sweden. A European application (EPC application) can get you protection in over thirty countries in Europe, including Sweden.
Another alternative is to submit separate patent applications directly to the individual countries in which you want to have a patent. That is a good route if you know that your market is only in certain, and relatively few, countries. Nevertheless, it is good to compare the total cost with that of an international application.
Please consult an expert who can give you assistance and advice on what application route is most appropriate in your particular case.
Swedish patent applications
International patent applications, PCT
European patent applications
Foreign national patent applications
Guidance on choosing an agent