Patents belong to technical protective rights, i.e. a technical content must underlie the application for protection. In §1(1) of the Patent Act (PatG), it is laid down in this regard that patents are granted only for inventions.
However, since there is no definitively generally valid definition for the term "invention", § 1(2) PatG explicitly excludes from patent protection non-technical innovations, such as discoveries, scientific theories, mathematical models, aesthetic form creations, plans, rules and methods for intellectual activities, games, commercial activities and other methods which exclusively contain instructions for the human mind.
§ 1(2) PatG also stipulates that the invention must meet the legally required protection prerequisites, novelty, inventive step and susceptibility of industrial application, for it to acquire a viable technical protective right.
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