Two great tools for inventors that won’t break your banking account: provisional patent applications and trademarks.
Successfully licensing an invention or having a product to market requires research and the capability to talk to people concerning your invention. It is impossible for a manufacturer or retail buyer to invest in a product or service without seeing it.
Forever reason, many inventors are hesitant to share their invention with others they don’t know. Further, once an invention is shared publicly, international patent rights can be lost, as well as the one-year timeline within which a United states patent application must be filed generally has begun to tick. For that reason, many inventors rush out and file a full-blown, patent invention. That addresses the uncertainties and also enables inventors to alert folks that their invention is “patent pending.”
However, this process has several downsides. First, utility patents as well as patent applications may cost many lots of money. In the end, an inventor might find the expense outweighs the main benefit. Second, in early stages, most invention designs remain evolving. Filing a patent too early could signify it doesn’t actually reflect probably the most evolved designs and drawings. Third–and the majority of important, i think–this investment is made before an inventor has conducted real consumer research to validate marketability from the product.
Two solutions that numerous inventors–myself included–use are to file provisional patent applications and trademark applications for your invention and product name or logo.
These applications provide the very best of both worlds. At a small part of the price of a utility patent application, a provisional patent application is not actually a patent. It never will convert to your patent or become public, unless further action is taken. A provisional patent application is actually a similar to a place holder. In simple terms, you will be laying state they the filing date in the provisional patent application if and when you elect to file for a full utility patent approximately 1 year from the time you file your provisional patent application. So if you decide to file a provisional patent application on March 1, 2010, and you then choose to file a utility patent application eleven months later on February 1, 2011, the priority date for your personal utility patent application would be considered to be March 1, 2010, for those material substantively disclosed and enabled within your provisional application.
Through the date you file your provisional patent application, you have the right to write “patent pending” in your prototype and show it to whomever you want. Along the way, you will not lose your international patent rights and might still choose to file your utility patent application. But it really will give you 12 months to build up your products or services and gain market information prior to actually must have the final choice on whether to file utility and/or international patent applications.
While technically you are able to write and file this application yourself, I suggest that you simply do it with a few guidance and, at the very least, an assessment by a new ideas for inventions.
Every product includes a name, or it will. Once you start while using name with prospective licensees and customers, the invention actually becomes symbolic of the name. I have got seen this happen repeatedly. And then there are merely so many names an item might take that meet the criteria of being both catchy and able to be registered.
So give all the shown to names for your personal product as is possible, and may include questions on the name within your researching the market. As soon as you decide on the preferred name, trademark the name. Then when you speak to prospective licensees, make use of the name. (Note: I did not say you should inform them you are totally hooked on the name). However if they become used to your product’s name, they will likely visit your trademark as another valuable asset you might be bringing towards the table. And yes it may further limit potential encroachment from likely competitors or knockoff products.
The underpinnings of trademark law are founded around the principle of first in use, first in right. Filing of your trademark application typically constitutes use, but so does simply utilizing the trademark. In reality, in a few states you must make use of the trademark publicly before filing a trademark application, and in the government trademark system, a trademark should be used in interstate commerce before it may register. Therefore, make use of trademark.
Once you’ve settled on and adopted your trademark you ought to identify it as a trademark by utilizing either ™ or ® as appropriate. Look at the local state laws regarding the application of.
In the majority of states, trademark rights can be asserted regionally totally free, by just applying the T into a product (completed by typing the letters “t” and “m” between two parentheses. The writing program automatically shrinks and raises it to achieve the T appearance.)
Second, a trademark could be registered using the Usa Patent and Trademark office and overseas. It is a faster process, taking only 10 to 14 months. Once it is registered being a Usa federally registered trademark, use the ® (also typed by inserting the “r” between parentheses).
I actually have always stated that intellectual property, patents, trademarks and copyrights are merely tools with your inventing tool box. Making use of the right tool can be extremely valuable. The nicest thing about idea patent is it can get you time to find out which other tools might be necessary. Likewise, trademarks are a valuable tool inventors overlook.