5 Things to Consider when Thinking of Patent Pending
Patent pending is a crucial, if oftentimes intricate, aspect to consider for individuals and businesses alike3 min read
Patent pending is a crucial, if oftentimes intricate, aspect to consider for individuals and businesses alike. Weighing the costs and benefits of obtaining a patent can be a difficult and confusing process. It’s important to take the time to research the available options and properly assess the potential impacts that a patent can have on the innovation process. It’s especially important for business owners located in Los Angeles, California to find a lawyer or law firm that specializes in the nuances of local regulations before 80filing a patent application. To help, we’ve developed this article to inform readers of the five top things to consider when filing a patent in Los Angeles, California.
Firstly, before a patent can be filed, it’s important to understand exactly which aspects of a business’s output will be protected by the patent. This is the production of something unique such as a product or a process. Many times, the word “invention” is used throughout the patent process, but this is very limiting and doesn’t fully encapsulate the range of items that a patent can protect. This could be an existing product that is enhanced in some way, a new method of production, or a product that incorporates existing technology and trusted practices to make something new. In order to receive a patent, a business must be able to show that their product or process is novel, useful, and non-obvious—the most difficult criteria to meet.
The second thing to consider when filing for a patent is the timeline associated with the process. This timeline can vary widely based on the specific attributes of the patent as well as the local regulations that are applicable. In Los Angeles, California, the process generally takes between one and three years. During this time, the application will be reviewed for completeness, clarification will be requested, the decision may be appealed and finally, the patent will be granted or denied. Business owners should be aware that this timeline is not set in stone and changes can happen throughout the process. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) can extend the timeline in certain situations, or if the business can demonstrate that they have been hindered in some way.
The third consideration when filing for a patent is the cost associated with the process. Filing for a patent in Los Angeles, California can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $20,000 depending on the complexity and specific requirements. The complexities of a patent application can be affected by the size of the application, the expertise required of the lawyers involved, and the scope of the innovation. Prior to actually starting the patent process, legal advice should be sought to get an understanding of what the estimated cost would be.
The fourth leading consideration when filing for a patent is the question of protection. Patents protect businesses from competitor exploitation in the form of copying inventions or reverse engineering ideas. In order to be effective at this, patents must be detailed enough to specifically identify, define, and contain enough information to effectively communicate the scope of the patent. If a patent is too broad and fails to contain the necessary details, then the patent will not be effective at protecting a business’s innovation from competitors.
The fifth and final thing to consider when filing a patent is the issue of infringement. During the patent process, it’s possible that a patent examiner will raise the issue of infringement. An infringement occurs when a business’s patent may be too similar to another existing patent. If this is the case, then the business’s patent may be rejected due to its closeness to a pre-existing patent. It’s important to thoroughly research the current patent registry to make sure that the patent that’s being filed is both unique and of sufficient legal scope to protect the invention from competitors.
When filing for a patent, it’s important to hire a lawyer or law firm that understands the nuances of Los Angeles-based business law and regulations. Obtaining legal counsel and advice with regards to patent-pending applications can help businesses better understand the complexities associated with the process and protect their inventions as best as possible.