Why You Should Hire a Patent Attorney to Protect your Product
The process for obtaining a patent is relatively complex and long (e.g., typically 1-3 years) even if all the upfront legal work is performed correctly. So, if you try to file independently and not hire patent attorney, you can waste a substantial amount of time and money in trying to negotiate a rather complex process that you may not be familiar with, and possibly end up with no patent protection for your product.
Patent attorneys are licensed experts who specialize in obtaining patents to protect new products with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO). A patent attorney can assist you in several areas:
1. Perform a patent search to determine the closest patents and provide a solid opinion on whether the product is patentable based on these patents.
You will want to know the probability of patenting your product upfront so you don’t waste time and money. After performing the patent search, the patent attorney can give you a reasonable opinion on the patentability of the product.
2. Select the correct type of patent application to use.
The two primary types of patent applications are utility patent applications and design patent applications. A utility patent protects the functional structure of the product, and a design patent protects the external look of a product. The patent attorney can provide guidance on the best type of patent application to use for your particular product.
3. Properly prepare and file all of the necessary documents.
Along with the patent application, there are numerous documents that must be prepared and filed including an Application Data Sheet, a declaration, and a Power of Attorney. If these documents are not filed correctly, the USPTO can reject the patent application.
4. Handle the negotiation/prosecution process so you will have a much greater probability of obtaining patent protection.
A patent examiner examines the patent application and often issues an Office Action objecting to the application. Afterward, a response document must be prepared and filed to address the examiner’s concerns in the Office Action. By having a patent attorney prepare the response document which complies with all of the USPTO requirements, you greatly increase the likelihood of obtaining the patent.
5. Obtain claim coverage that is broad enough to cover your product and to stop competitors from copying your product.
The claims define the scope of protection of your product and need to be carefully drafted to obtain the protection you need. A well-trained patent attorney can draft claims that will give you the desired protection of your product.
In summary, by having a patent attorney handle the patent process from start to finish, you will have a much higher probability of obtaining patent protection for your product. Also, you free up your time to focus on what you are best at – developing and marketing new products and growing your business.
If you have a new product that you are interested in protecting, please contact us at 248-853-1422.Back To Blog