Topic

Disclose an Invention

Who is this for?

Inventions created at the University of Toronto (U of T) using U of T resources, equipment, facilities and/or funds administered by the university are subject to the U of T Inventions Policy. The U of T Inventions Policy applies to all members of the U of T community, including visiting researchers.

What do I need before I can begin?

Prior to disclosing an Invention, it is useful to review the information on U of T’s Inventions Policy and Revenue Sharing page. The invention should be more than an idea. There should be data that shows the idea is valid.

Overview

Filing a Confidential Invention Disclosure (CID) is mandatory and your first step towards commercialization at the University of Toronto (U of T). This disclosure form includes a description of the invention, the inventors, funding sources and resources used to create the invention. Disclosing the invention is a requirement before marketing, selling, licensing, patenting, or otherwise assigning an invention created at U of T. This information also helps The Innovations and Partnerships Office (IPO) determine if a funder, or other party, has prior commercial rights to the invention, whether the invention is patentable, marketability, and other considerations.

U of T has a modern, flexible ownership Inventions Policy that is ‘Inventor’s Choice’: in absence of pre-existing IP rights, our inventors may choose to assume full responsibility for patenting and commercialization, or can offer the invention to U of T. If an invention is offered to U of T, IPO will evaluate it prior to accepting.

If the work that led to the invention was done at another institution (e.g., at a U of T-affiliated hospital), contact the appropriate hospital research office or the other institution’s technology transfer office. Generally, where the location of the majority of the work will determine which institutional policy will apply and whether or not an inter-institutional agreement is necessary.

When to File a Disclosure

Disclosures should be filed as soon as the invention is clearly conceptualized or as soon as the new product or process can be described in enough detail that someone else familiar with the field could use it. Patents and other Intellectual Property (IP) rights may be affected by public disclosure of the invention (e.g. through written publication, thesis, presentation, manuscripts, and/or abstracts), so IPO encourages inventors to file CIDs as soon as possible.

If you believe that what you have developed does not fall under the Inventions Policy and wish to confirm, please fill out the Declaration of Invention with No Significant Use Form. We may keep this form on record and it will be held at IPO for informational purposes only.

How to File an Invention Disclosure

  1. Fill out the Confidential Invention Disclosure Form. Use the Guide to the U of T Inventions Disclosure Form to assist you in filling out this form
  2. Submit the unsigned form in Word (.doc) format, to IPO via email to ip.officer@utoronto.ca
  3. The IP Officer will examine your application, and return for clarification or any missing information. When complete, you will be advised it is ready for signing/dating.

If you require assistance, please contact ip.officer@utoronto.ca.

What to Expect after Disclosing

  1. You will be contacted by an Intellectual Property Officer from IPO to acknowledge receipt of your disclosure.
  2. If a research partner or sponsor has an option to license your invention, or if we must notify them that an invention has been made, IPO will notify the partner that a CID has been submitted. In some cases, IPO will await their response before additional action is taken.
  3. If there are no sponsor or other third party obligations and you request personal ownership, the Intellectual Property Officer will provide you with assignment documentation. Please note that with ownership of an Invention comes many responsibilities. Please be informed and prepared prior to requesting ownership.
  4. If you wish to offer the Invention to U of T, specialists at IPO will evaluate the novelty and commercial potential of the invention before accepting it into U of T’s portfolio.
  5. If the invention is not accepted, IPO will provide rationale and in some cases suggest additional work to refine the invention. If the project is accepted into IPO‘s portfolio, we will work with you during the commercialization process.

Forms & Downloads

VPRI Role

  • Advise on U of T’s Inventions Policy
  • Receive and evaluate Confidential Invention Disclosures for technologies created at U of T
  • Support the protection of U of T IP through patenting and other means
  • Assist in finding partners and funding to support proof-of-concept and commercialization
  • Market U of T Inventions to industry
  • Negotiate license agreements and provide industry access to university owned inventions
  • Support long-term relationships with strategic partners that support help develop early-stage discoveries into market-ready technologies and products

VPRI Contact

Staff

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