No one can claim full ownership of an idea, a product, a process, a composition etc until it is patented. Your invention can only be fully protected through patent application. The US Patent & Trademark Office is tasked with the responsibility of giving inventors patents to their property. However, inventors placing their applications for patents are advised not to use terms like “patented” or ”patent pending” before making their applications or before being approved. This is because using such terms is against the federal law. However, most inventors have stayed long with their new ides just because they do not know how to get a patent. Getting patents courtesy of the US Patent & Trademark Office requires special legal knowhow. If you find it a bit technical and complicated to seek for a patent single-handedly, employ the services of a reputable patent attorney to help you through. This article will cover vital steps on how to get a patent.
To begin with, in your search for a patent, you will have to pay a visit to a United States Patent & Trademark Office’s local branch. If you find this inconveniencing, you can as well find a vast pull of patent information as well as the relevant forms posted on the website of the United States Patent & Trademark Office. After finding relevant information, the next step is preparing a proposal of your idea/invention that is comprehensive with all the necessary details. The proposal should be fully descriptive of the invention. It must also contain descriptions that are specific in English including detailed drawings. The next vital step is the preparation and execution of a short declaration that your invention is original and doesn’t infringe existing patents. After coming up with the relevant copies as well as following set instructions, it is at this point that proposal & declaration submission takes place. The two documents are submitted to the United States Director at the United States Patent & Trademark Office’s local branch. You can also submit the documents online. When submitting, inventors have to bill for filing fees which is meant for searching and examining the proposal.
If objections as well as modification requests are presented by the United States & Trademark Office, you have to respond without delay. Obtaining patents through this office is a process that has seen people giving up on the way. However, the length of time it takes to acquire the patent is dependent upon the contents of your proposal. If the contents of the proposal are accurate and raise neither objections nor modification requests, the process takes averagely eighteen months for the inventor to acquire the patent. This means that the inventor has to be extra careful when coming up with the proposal because if objections and modification requests arise, an inventor can have it rough waiting for the patent.
After obtaining the patent, the inventor pays for maintenance fee. These fees are paid at a 3-4 year interval following the date the patent was granted. This should not worry you much because there is a grace period of six months to settle the fees. Renewal of patent is a must prior to expiry date. Patents have a life of up to twenty years, but design patents have a shorter life period of fourteen years. You now know how to get a patent, go ahead and patent your invention.