Filing an Invention Idea – First Step to Patenting the New Invention

When it comes to capitalising on your invention ideas, often the first step involved in this process is establishing legal ownership rights to the inventions themselves. You will then need to have the documentation that proves you were the sole inventor to invent your potential product within the given time frame. This documentation can be as simple as an original design drawing (or blueprint) or a set of specifications, drawings and/or blueprints. However, in order to patent your invention, there are certain requirements which must be met. The first requirement is filing a complete and accurate application. Many companies will provide you with these documents and instructions for filing, but some inventors may prefer to prepare their own. 

Most commonly, when seeking capitalisation of invention ideas the first step involves looking to see if the inventor has filed any applications with the Patent Office. If they haven’t, this often indicates that they do not have sufficient evidence of their invention’s originality or do not consider their invention worthy enough to patent. Additionally, if a patent application has been filed, it usually requires a minimum of three years in which the application must remain active. If the patent examiner finds the invention to be eligible, they will send the application back to the inventor to make any final changes before issuing the patent. 

It is important to note that the inventor does not receive any cash from the issued patent. In most cases, the patent is for an invention which remains a work in progress until the product/ idea is released commercially. This means that the patent only grants you the right to use the invention in commerce once the product/idea has been released to the public. One caveat to keep in mind, however, is that if the business you are involved in at the time of filing is not producing any revenue, then you can likely patent your idea anyway as long as it meets the above criteria.

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While many inventors and technology developers are aware of the difficulties and cost of selecting and patenting new inventions, many less informed people don’t realize the importance of protecting their invention ideas. While it may be desirable for businesses to be able to market their products immediately after an invention is created, having a qualified patent is essential to give future entrepreneurs and innovators confidence in your product or idea. Without a patent to protect your idea, you may find yourself with a potentially hostile takeover by another company wishing to license or sell your invention later. 

Invention ideas should be researched and evaluated carefully by patent attorneys and patent specialists. There is no “sure thing” when it comes to securing your invention rights. Every invention comes with its own set of unique challenges, and the best way to avoid being overwhelmed by these challenges is to thoroughly research and properly file your original patent application. This is why contacting a patent attorney and/or patent specialist as soon as you have an idea is crucial. There are certain steps an inventor should take early on to prepare their invention for filing with the US Patent and Trademark Office. 

The first step that should be taken on the date of filing is developing a comprehensive strategy. A detailed description of the products, processes, designs and materials to be used in the creation of the invention should be developed and submitted to the US Patent and Trademark always be necessary to retain one in order to file the patent application. For example, if the nature of the invention is such that only a singular patent can be granted, there may be no need to seek counsel.

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Additionally, some states and localities require the submission of a specification and plan of action prior to the issuance of patent applications. If the new invention ideas are to meet the requirements for filing under the state and local laws, it may be necessary to also include a plan of action. Developing these documents prior to filing the patent application will allow time for adequate research and analysis to determine whether the invention meets the legal requirements for patentability. In addition to developing a detailed plan, it is important to follow up on all leads that come into the inventor’s office. Interviewing clients and others that have an interest in the inventor’s work will provide valuable information. In addition, interviewing a potential business partner is also a good first step. Interviewing the attorney that is going to handle the filing will provide valuable information about the experience and qualifications of this person. Asking for references and speaking with people that have worked with the attorney and are familiar with his or her work will help ensure that the choice made is best for the particular invention idea and fits with the needs of the client.

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