Your ideas are valuable. You’ve worked hard to get to this point and it wouldn’t do to have it swept right out from under you!
Good intentions aren’t enough to protect intellectual properties, however. You need the law on your side. The field of patent law is a broad one, encompassing several distinctions, filing dates, and applicability. Choosing one means protecting your idea from theft and giving it the longevity it needs to become something truly great. Should you be considering the domestic patent process — or just need to know what to do in the case of an intellectual property issue — it’s time to read up.
Patent law is your best chance at sending your idea to the stars. Here’s everything you need to know about setting up your very first patent application.
Keep In Mind Not Everything Can Be Patented
The most important thing to know right off the bat is you can’t patent everything. That doesn’t make sense, first and foremost! The qualifications, however, are broad enough to encompass nearly any original creation. Qualifying for an invention involves a careful process of comparing your work to similar ones on the market and lining it up with today’s patent applications. This isn’t something you should rush, so take some extra time to think deeply about what you have to offer the rest of the world!
Your Filing Date Is Your Personal Timestamp
You’ve probably heard news stories about intellectual rights being given up or bought. Ideas are flexible things that change on a dime, so make sure to keep your filing date and acceptance dates close at hand. A new patent has a term of around 20 years from the initial filing date, after which you’ll have to reapply to still be protected. The first patent law was used nearly 230 years ago — things have changed quite a bit since then, due in no small part to the Internet making it quite easy to snatch ideas on the fly. In fact, you shouldn’t keep waiting to apply…
Patent Applications Are Becoming More Common
Did you know the USPTO receives over 500,000 patent applications every year? That’s a pretty broad metric to go up against! In the 12 industies where patents are used successfully, over 50% of inventions meet the criteria for becoming patented. Being rejected balances delicately on a whole host of factors, from your invention not standing out enough to your paperwork being misfiled. A provisional patent application will, at the very least, protect your invention for a period of twelve months.
You Need To Figure Out What Makes Your Idea Stand Out
Your biggest chance to obtain a patent is to figure out what makes your idea stand out from the rest. Does your bottle design have a unique shape that isn’t quite like anything else out on the market? Are you familiar with the differences in design patents, utility patents, and plant patents? You’ll walk through this process step-by-step, best done with the aid of a patent attorney. Every last detail is used to create a strong foundation that will protect your interests for years to come.
A Houston Patent Attorney Will Give You A Helping Hand
Let’s face it. Intellectual property practices are finicky things. When the patent application process is intimidating you, patent law can be sorted out with the perspective of patent attorneys. They’ll take a look at your unique invention and help you come to a useful conclusion, even if that conclusion is putting off your application in favor of a few more design tweaks. With so many ideas flying around every which way, now’s the best time to start thinking about where your invention could take you.
Patent law isn’t a chore, but a way to bring out your very best. You might just be surprised at what you can do!