The most valuable assets of inventors and entrepreneurs are often their trade secrets, copyrights, patents, and trademarks. Safeguarding your intellectual property will help you to preserve your competitive advantage. A knowledgeable and experienced Seattle patent attorney will help you protect your intellectual property, as well as allow you to focus on what you do best and achieving your business goals.
How Does a Patent Safeguard Your IP?
Your patent will help you prevent others from infringing your right to manufacture, use, or sell an invention. The United States Patent and Trademark Office issues patents for the United States. Most patents last for about 20 years, and cover the following attributes:
- Design Patents: Design patents protect the design and artistic or aesthetic elements of your invention.
- Utility Patents: Utility patents are the most common type of patent. They protect the manufacturing or operation of a chemical, a process, or a machine.
- Plant Patents: Plant patents cover the creation and asexual reproduction of a new variety of plant.
A knowledgeable Seattle patent attorney can help you analyze your invention to determine which patent types are the most appropriate for your valuable IP. This will help ensure that it’s fully protected. To learn more about whether you might need a foreign patent, Bold IP can provide you with more information about that process.
Is the Invention Patentable?
A Seattle patent attorney can help you evaluate the likelihood of your patent application meeting with success. To be patentable, your invention must be:
- Novel: If an invention is already known, used, and/or discussed in publication cannot be patented. Instead, it must be a novelty, which is a term that U.S. patent law defines very strictly.
- Nonobvious: Your invention cannot be considered obvious by anyone of ordinary skill in your area of expertise of technology.
- Useful: The invention must be more than just an idea, and it must be useful idea.
Before embarking on the patent application process, a patent search is essential. If you perform your own search, your analysis could be incomplete, which may subsequently lead to unnecessary delays or even denial of your application. An experienced Seattle patent attorney will help you perform a thorough search of patent databases, relevant scientific and technology literature, and prior art to assess whether your invention is likely patentable.
Call Bold IP today to schedule a consultation with a knowledgeable patent attorney. Bold IP will discuss your company’s needs and help you forge a strategy designed to protect your IP and your business interests.
Patent Application Types
A Seattle patent attorney can help you craft your application to improve your chances of avoiding delays and other complications. If your invention is patentable, you then have a choice of filing a provisional or a non-provisional patent application. A provisional patent application (PPA) will:
- provide an earlier priority date for your invention if you later file a nonprovisional patent application, and
- allow you to label your invention “patent pending.”
You must file your nonprovisional patent application within a year after you file your PPA. Your formal IP protections are not awarded until you receive a nonprovisional patent.
Drafting a nonprovisional patent application is time-intensive. The requirements are also highly technical. You must include the invention’s specifications, patent claims, and any necessary technical drawings. Your patent can be denied if:
- you don’t comply with the USPTO’s stringent submission and formatting requirements, or
- your application is either vague or overly broad.
Bold IP understands the USPTO requirements. Bold IP can save you both stress and anxiety by making sure to properly inform you of the application process. By employing a Seattle patent attorney’s expertise in filing patent applications, you can thus increase your chances of approval.
If Your Invention Is Not Patentable
If your invention is not patentable, Bold IP can help you determine if other options are appropriate to safeguard your IP. For instance, nondisclosure and confidentiality agreements are legal contracts that can offer some protections to inventors.
A nondisclosure agreement (NDA) will do the following:
- identify the elements of your invention or process that are confidential or are trade secrets;
- state each party’s obligation to keep these elements confidential;
- designate the length of time each party must keep the information confidential;
- describe how the parties will resolve disputes regarding the NDA, such as requiring arbitration; and,
- list remedies if the other party violates or breaches the agreement.
To ensure that you’re making the right move, consult with a Seattle patent lawyer before binding yourself to a nondisclosure agreement.
Call Now to Discuss Your IP Needs With a Seattle Patent Attorney
Your Seattle patent attorney will work hard to provide you comprehensive IP solutions to protect your business interests, as well as save you the stress and anxiety that can accompany a patent application. Contact Bold IP for a no-cost consultation to discuss your IP solutions.