Under either treaty, you get credited for your first filing date if you seek patent protection later in other countries, by the deadlines shown above.
* Some jurisdictions have a later deadline. Europe's, for example, is 31 months.
Under the PCT, you can file an application first in your home country, then up to 30 months later in other countries.
If you file a PCT "Request" at your local Receiving Office, your application will be searched and examined before you must decide whether to proceed in other countries.
The National Phase
To obtain patents in other countries, you must initiate the "national phase" in countries where you want to obtain a patent. This involves hiring a local patent attorney in each country of interest, filing required papers like powers of attorney and translations, and paying local fees.