Seattle Patent Lawyers
Why Hire a Patent Lawyer?
When you have a business that relies heavily on its intellectual property to succeed, you want the best team possible to ensure that it is protected. This should include an experienced patent lawyer.
Your future patent lawyer not only had to pass the Washington state bar exam, but also the patent bar exam. They are specifically qualified to handle the complex and often overwhelming process of applying for patents through the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
In addition to their experience with patent law, patent attorneys are required to be experts in at least one technical field. This could be anything from engineering to psychology. Hiring an expert in patent law who is also proficient in the technical side of your business could end up being the best investment you have ever made for your company.
Filing a patent application is a lengthy legal process that requires an extensive knowledge of patent law. You need someone who is well versed to write your application, respond to questions from the office, and determine when to pursue and when to abandon an application to avoid wasting time and money.
How to Find the Best Patent Lawyer
Patent attorneys are a very specialized type of attorney, so it is not likely that there are more than a handful of experienced patent attorneys in the Seattle area.
Start by asking around. People that you trust in your industry often have the best idea of which attorneys can help you get a patent. Do you have mentors or know other inventors who are in your field that have filed patents in the past? Word-of-mouth is one of the best ways to find out the positives and negatives about each attorney, so make sure to ask about that, too. It's also a good way to find a patent attorney who has experience writing patent applications for technology in your field.
If you can't find an attorney in Seattle or its suburbs, it's okay to look further outside the area. Patent law is federal, so as long as you feel comfortable working with a lawyer over the phone and through email, you can work with a top lawyer from anywhere in the country.
Once you have the names and contact information of a few patent attorneys that look like good candidates, arrange to speak to them in person or over the phone. You want to narrow down your short list to no more than three attorneys. Set up a time to speak with them, explain your business and innovations, and ask targeted questions that will allow you to narrow it down to the best one.
In order for your attorney to be the best, they need to understand your invention as well as you do. Be sure to look up prior patents that are similar to the products that you are creating. Know how yours differ from those so that you can explain all of this to the patent lawyer. Once you have chosen your patent lawyer from the handful that you initially selected, be sure to send them a prototype and your sell sheet.
Another great way to ensure that you have the best patent lawyer in Seattle is to educate yourself as much as possible on patent law, the patents that have been filed that are similar to yours, and on your own inventions. If you can follow the process, at least to a certain degree, with your attorney, it will make things go much smoother.
Questions for Patent Lawyers
- What is your workload? While you don't want a lawyer who is so busy they don't have time for you, you do want a lawyer who is busy. Patent law is a field with more demand than supply, so if the person your speaking do isn't getting much work, it's probably a sign that you should look elsewhere.
- What is your experience in my industry? Do they have experience writing patents for companies or innovations like yours? Do they have experience either working or studying in your field of innovation? It is in your best interest and the best interest of your inventions to have someone who can actually understand what you have to offer.
- How much will this all cost? Find out about all of the patent fees that could be incurred, what the retainer fee is from the law firm, how the fees will be billed, and whether or not they offer payment plans for early startups. Make sure you get all of this in writing once you agree to work together.
- Do you have any testimonials from past customers? It can be really valuable, especially if you didn't find this lawyer through the recommendation of a mentor or business owner in your industry, to see what other people have to say about the patent attorney they worked with.
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Legal Services Offered by Our On-Demand Seattle Patent Attorneys
Our experienced Seattle patent attorneys & lawyers represent individuals and businesses throughout the world with domestic and foreign patent preparation and prosecution matters. They have extensive experience handling applications from nearly every sector of technology, including biotechnology, computer hardware and software, communication networks, internet systems and methods, automotive, medical equipment, construction technology, consumer electronics, and clean technology research and development.
Our patent attorneys are of the most highly trained in the industry, requiring a scientific background, and passing a second level of testing known as the Patent Bar Examination. Thousands of patents are submitted to the patent office every day and a patent committee reviews each patent for its validity. The process requires that correctly drafted documentation present a clear case for the novelty of the invention, which is best made by a patent attorney with a higher education background in your industry.
Our Seattle patent attorneys & lawyers can help you file a provisional patent, which lasts for 1-year and allows you to immediately begin using/manufacturing your invention with the confidence that your idea is protected. These types of patents are great if you think your idea will change a lot over the next year before you file a (non-provisional) patent. These patents are easier to obtain and are less expensive but you should have a patent lawyer review your provisional patent application to insure that you are meeting your objectives when you file your patent.
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- 9 min read
What Is a Patent?
Before learning how to apply for a patent, you have to first understand that a patent is a property right that gives you, as an inventor, the right to sue others who try to use, make, or sell your invention without your permission. According to US law, only the inventor of an item can file a patent application for it.
If you want to protect your invention from thieves, you need to file a patent application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. However, before you prepare the application, you should make sure your invention is patentable, perform research, and hire a qualified attorney.
There are three main types of patents that you may choose to apply for:
- Utility patents are the most common. They cover inventions that have a specific function. Software patents are a type of utili
- 8 min read
What is Analogous Art?
Analogous art refers to a method of criteria that patent reviewers and courts use to determine whether an idea is too similar to another invention and therefore qualifies as prior art. When looking at a patent application, the reviewer will determine whether the idea is novel and non-obvious to a person of ordinary skill in the claimed field of endeavor.
Some ideas and inventions are so diverse or remote that a person of unordinary skill would be highly unlikely to understand them. If the idea or art is this unique and diverse, it is often referred to as non-analogous and doesn't qualify under the prior art requirement of patent review. However, analogous art that is too similar to another invention or idea will likely not qualify for patent protection.
The analogous art test is very specific. Art is considered analogous when:
- It is reasonably similar to the problem that the inventor faced; or
- 9 min read
What Is a Cease and Desist Letter?
A cease and desist letter does not automatically signify a lawsuit. It is simply a warning about illegal behavior that lets you know that further penalties could follow if the behavior, such as patent infringement, doesn't stop.
Here are some ways it is possible to violate the intellectual property of another:
- Plagiarizing someone's work
- Using an invention without the right to access it
- Engaging in illegal or suspicious activity that involves someone's work
The first step that you can take to address these issues is to send a cease and desist letter. This letter puts the person in violation on notice that they are engaging in illegal use of a property. It advises them to stop, or
- 4 min read
Want to Register a Patent?
You'll need a patent application for that.
If you're idea is patentable, you must create an application to apply for a patent via the United States government in order to protect your invention from others taking it. Because, in the U.S., it's not the first one who has the idea, but the first one to register a patent is the one protected in court.
1. Do you know what type of patent you need?
There are a wide variety of patents you can register for, but you need to know what type of patent would work best for you.
Here are some categories of common types of patents:
Utility patents are the most common type of patents. A utility patent protects the way something is used and how it works, such as a process or article of a process, a machine, p
- 8 min read
Utility Patent vs. Design Patent
The difference between a utility patent and a design patent is that:
- The utility patent is a trademark protection that makes sure a person has full control over his or her invention.
- A design patent is used when you create a new design for an existing product.
What Is a Utility Patent?
The utility patent is a trademark protection that makes sure a person has full control over his or her invention. More than 90 percent of all patents issued each year are utility patents.
You receive a utility patent when you invent a new process, machine, or manufacturing system. A utility patent lists an invention's elements and declares how much it covers for the invention. A utility patent is more valuable than a design patent because the utility is the hardest part to create.
Think of the utility pate