Traverse Legal Patent Attorneys have the knowledge and experience to handle all of your patent-related legal needs. Our Attorneys specialize in conducting patent searches, drafting patent opinions, and preparing and prosecuting applications. We can assist you with drafting various agreements, such as license agreements and confidential/non-disclosure agreements. Whether you are an independent inventor going through the patent process for the first time or a company looking to extend your intellectual property portfolio, our patent attorneys have the experience and business judgment you need.
Patent law includes all of the laws, rules, and regulations surrounding patent applications and patents, along with the intellectual property they protect. Patents traditionally protected tangible scientific inventions, but over time, they have also come to cover intangible inventions such as software, computing methods, graphical user interfaces, genetic modifications, and even business practices. Once an invention is patented, patent law gives the owner the right to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling the patented invention during the term of the patent. Patent applications and issued patents may also be licensed and sold.
Most individuals and even many businesses will never need a patent attorney. However, those that do will find the advice and expertise of one of these legal experts invaluable. A patent lawyer works closely with a wide number of inventors, business representatives, investors, and others to determine if an invention is patentable. If it is, the attorney assists the individual or company in moving through the patent filing and prosecution process to protect their invention.
Patent attorneys also provide analysis opinions to clients regarding whether a new design, product, or process is clear to use. These are sometimes called “freedom to operate” (FTO) or “right to use” opinions.
Patent attorneys have spent years studying the law. Most have an undergraduate degree in science or engineering, giving them an understanding of what goes into inventing a product, process, or design. Next, they attend law school and pass the bar. They also must pass the USPTO registration examination, sometimes referred to as the patent bar exam, before they can practice.
Patent applications are available to anyone, and you do not need a patent attorney to file one. However, the preparation of a patent application and the prosecution process with the United States Patent and Trademark (USPTO) to obtain a patent is an undertaking requiring the knowledge of the law and rules of the USPTO practice and procedures. It also requires knowledge of the technical background of a particular invention. The USPTO often issues rejections or objections to patent applications that may be difficult to navigate without the expertise of a patent attorney. Even if an invention is able to obtain a patent without the help of a patent attorney, there are no assurances that the patent obtained would adequately protect the particular invention.
This is why we recommend working with a registered patent attorney at Traverse Legal for your needs. Our experienced patent lawyers will carefully determine whether or not your invention is eligible for a patent and assist you with preparing and filing the patent application. We will also help you navigate any decisions made against your application and work with the USPTO as needed to ensure they have all of the information they need to make their decision. So while it’s not necessary to work with a legal expert to patent an invention, it is often the right decision.
A Patent is a property right granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) to an inventor “to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling the invention throughout the United States or importing the invention into the United States” for a limited time in exchange for public disclosure of the invention when the patent is granted. An invention requires novelty, non-obviousness, usefulness, and must be adequately and sufficiently described to be patentable.
First, it is wise to conduct a patent search to determine what similar inventions have already been patented. Next, you need to determine what type of patent to file and ensure all necessary forms are filled out prior to filing. After filing, a Patent Examiner reviews the application and may issue an Office Action citing any objections or rejections to the application. If all issues with the application are ultimately resolved, a Notice of Allowance will issue.
Utility Patents may be granted to anyone who invents or discovers any new and useful process, machine, article of manufacture, compositions of matters, or any new useful improvement thereof. Design Patents protect an article’s aesthetic appearance, meaning the shape/configuration or surface ornamentation applied to the article. Plant Patents may be granted to anyone who invents/discovers and asexually reproduces any distinct, new variety of plant.
A provisional patent application is a patent filing that allows you to obtain an earlier filing date without triggering the start of the patent term for a non-provisional patent application. The United States is a first-to-file patent system, so being able to establish priority via filing date is important. Often, inventions with a provisional patent application with indicate “Patent Pending.”
Utility and Plant Patents are valid starting on the date the Patent is issued and typically expire twenty (20) years from the filing date of the earliest non-provisional application upon which the patent is based. Design Patents are valid from fifteen (15) years from the date of issue.
Patents are territorial rights. In general, the exclusive rights are only applicable in the country or region in which a patent has been filed and granted. So a U.S. patents only provide protection in the U.S.
The Attorneys at Traverse Legal have been globally recognized for their experience and results. We can provide legal expertise for a variety industries and practices areas such as: Complex Litigation, Internet, Trademark, Copyright, Patent, Cybersquatting, Drone, Defamation, Trade Secret, Non-Compete, and Business Law. Contact out team today!