As any patent lawyer knows, patents are incredibly common here in the United States, and it has been that way for a very long time. Patent law itself has a long history, as it was first used as many as two hundred and twenty eight years ago. Without patent law, the typical patent lawyer would be out of work, of course, but patent law in the United States is hugely important for a number of reasons.
For one, patent law and patent lawyers help to provide organization to the system of who gets a patent for their creation. Patent applications are incredibly common, with the USPTO receiving as many as five hundred thousand patent applications each and every year, if not even more than that. Of course, not every patent can be granted, and patent law helps in some ways to sent the standards for those that are.
The role of the patent attorney goes hand in hand with this, as it is the patent lawyer who enforces such laws and helps to keep the integrity of the patent process. Alongside the important role of the patent attorney, there is a list of criteria that an invention must meet in order to be eligible for being approved for patents. This list of criteria is a relatively broad one, but it is of course incredibly crucial that your invention be entirely original if you are hoping to get a patent for it. Aside from this, there will be other industry standards that must be met, and these standards are likely to vary from industry to industry. In the case of any confusion, a patent lawyer can always be contacted and then consulted with.
So who gets a patent? While certainly anybody can apply for a patent, provided that they have created a unique and original invention, there are twelve industries where patents are currently being used successfully. These patents span throughout many industries here in the United States, and up to half of all qualified patent applications are in the process of being patented currently, meaning that if you have a valid patent application for a valid invention, there’s a good chance that you’ll get a patent at the end of the day.
So what’s really the point of getting a patent or contacting a patent lawyer? To put it simply: patent protection and protection of your invention itself. The patent itself can provide you with much needed protection for your invention, keeping other people from profiting off of it if they have not given you the credit that you deserve. On top of this, a patent lawyer can help you to ensure that the patent agreement has not been breached, and a patent lawyer can take action if this becomes the case.
But what about protection for your invention before it has officially been granted a patent? Fortunately there are steps that can be taken to ensure that this happens. If there is a patent pending on your product, you are typically able to claim the protections that a patent would involve for a period that is no longer than twelve months, the span of time of one full year. Longer than this, however, will lead to the need for an actual official patent if you are hoping to retain these protections. If you have any questions at all about this process, a patent lawyer is likely to be able to help you to answer them and to take the necessary steps to make this a reality.
It’s also very important to understand that even inventions that have been granted patents are not going to be protected forever. Though this will certainly vary from industry to industry, the lifespan of the typical patent is about twenty years, give or take. Once your patent has expired, however, you will likely be able to apply for and get another patent for the next set of twenty years.
The world of patents can be a confusing one, there’s no doubt about it. But patents can become much easier to understand with the help and guidance of a skilled and experienced patent lawyer.