The law applies to inventions created by an individual inventor or by a group of inventors when the individual inventor or at least a member of the group of inventors is the employee of a legal person of private law or public law.

Under the new law, service inventions are inventions that meet the following conditions:

  • the inventions have resulted from the exercise of the inventor’s work duties, expressly referred to in the individual employment contract and job description or brought forward by other binding acts for the inventor, which provide an inventive mission,
  • they were obtained during the individual employment contract, as for a period of maximum two years from its termination, according to the case, through the knowledge or the employer’s experience usage by using the material resources of the employer, as a result of the preparation and professional training of the inventor employee acquired based on the care and expense of the employer or by the usage of certain information resulting from the activity of the employer or made available by him or her.

In the case of the first category, it is the employer’s propriety right, the latter not being obliged to pay additional compensation to the employee.

In the case of the second category, the invention belongs to the inventor employee, apart from the cases in which it is claimed by the employer, within four months from the notification issued by the employee. In this respect, the employee creating an invention is obliged to immediately inform the employer. If the employer claims the invention, he is obliged to pay additional compensation to the employee in accordance with the specific provisions of the internal rules or, in their absence, according to the criteria mentioned in the normative act.
The rights concerning the inventions created by employees who do not fall into any of the situations mentioned above belong to the inventor employee.
If the service work invention right belongs to the employer, he is entitled to apply for a patent request or the registration of a utility model in Romania and / or in other countries, to claim the right of priority in Romania.
By the new regulation, the elimination of the possibility to derogate from the legal aspects through contractual provisions clause becomes possible.
Unlike the previous regulation which allowed the inclusion of certain contractual clauses in order to derogate from the provisions of the law, the current regulation does not refer to this possibility, with one exception only. Thus, the employee and the employer may stipulate contractually that the right over the inventions from the first category belongs to the employee, to the extent which the following prerequisites are met: (i) the employer is public law person, that (ii) the employer has as its object the research- development activity (concept defined by the Government’s Ordinance no. 57/2002 on scientific research and technological development).
Contrary to previous regulations, the text distinguishes between Research and Development institutions under public law (universities and research institutes) and private law entities in the economic environment. As stated in the explanatory memorandum of law, only for these institutions will be given priority in any contractual provisions between institutions and their employees (teachers, scholars, staff, etc.).
It should be noted that by eliminating “the contrary contractual clauses” the law does not allow the parties to provide contractually that the right to a patent should belong to both the employee and the employer (except the situations mentioned above).
Clear criteria are being regulated for granting inventors remuneration. According to Law no. 83/2014, the criteria for determining the remuneration of the second category of inventions which have been claimed by the employer should be determined by the internal regulations of the employer.

In the absence of such provisions, each case shall apply one or more of the following criteria:

  • o the economic, commercial and / or social effects deriving from the exploitation of the invention by the employer or by third parties with the consent of the employer;
  • o the extent to which the employer is involved in the realization of the invention service, including the resources made available by the employer for its realization;
  • o the creative contribution of the employee inventor, when the invention has been created by several inventors.

The normative act also contains provisions governing the rights and obligations of the parties with regard to filing the application for the patent, as well as the disclosure of information relating to inventions which constitutes a trade secret.
Implementing the Regulations of the Law 64/1991 to be amended by Government decision within 60 days after publication of Law no. 84/2013.

Published in The Romanian Official Gazette, First Part, no. 471 of the 26th of June 2014.
Issuer: Romanian Parliament