What protects me from you stealing my idea?
For your protection and peace-of-mind, a ‘Non-Disclosure Agreement’ (NDA) is provided. You are presented with this document during the ‘Submit Your Idea’ process. In brief, the NDA states that we are prevented from disclosing your invention information to anyone else without your expressed written consent.
What type of invention ideas do you not prefer?
There are two types of inventions that we prefer. First, we like to work with simple improvements to existing products currently on the market. Second, we like to work with specialty tools that are used to perform specific tasks.
What type of invention ideas do you not prefer?
The invention ideas that are unlikely to be selected by us are; Ingestible (foods, liquids, medicines), Written Works (novels, business plans, marketing plans), Artwork (logos, designs, symbols), Unique Titles (trade names, tag lines, phrases), and highly complex ideas.
What is a Patent?
It is a property right for an invention granted by a government to the inventor. A United States patent gives inventors the right “to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling their invention throughout the United States or importing their invention into the United States” for a limited time. In exchange for public disclosure of the invention when the patent is granted and for fees paid to the United States.
What can be patented?
Utility patents protect inventions that are a novel, non-obvious, and useful:
- Article of manufacture
- Composition of matter
- Or an improvement of any of the above items. Most patents are for incremental improvements in known technology; the innovation is evolution rather than revolution.
If you license my invention, what is my royalty percentage?
If your idea is selected and, thereafter, a licensing contract is secured, you can expect to receive a 5% royalty on all gross product sales, the consumer’s that ‘Picked’ your invention on the Patent Picks marketing site share 4%, and we receive 1%. So, for instance, if the manufacturer’s annual gross product sales are $50,000,000, then you will receive exactly $2,500,000 in annual royalty income.
How do I know you are an Honest & Trustworthy company?
We strongly encourage you to do some background research into our company. Our reputation within the invention industry is second-to-none, something we are very proud of, and one we are absolutely committed to maintain.
Can you sell my invention without my permission?
No. Under no circumstance can we sell your idea without your expressed written consent. If a supplier makes an offer to purchase or license your invention, we will present it to you with our recommendation. – It’s your decision alone to accept or decline an offer.
How does Patent Picks earn a profit?
We earn a profit in two ways. First, we earn a profit as a percentage of the invention development and patenting fees charged to our clients. Second, we earn 1% of the royalty profits received by our clients.
What is my long-term obligation to you?
You are free to do anything you choose with your invention (manufacture it, market it, sell it, license it) and are not financially obligated to us. You are only obligated to pay us a percentage of your profits if we are allowed, with your written permission, to negotiate the terms of a new product licensing contract or direct buyout agreement for you.
What cannot be patented?
- Laws of nature
- Physical phenomena
- Abstract ideas
- Literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works. These can be Copyright protected.
- Inventions which are considered not useful or possible by the USPTO for example perpetual motion machines; or offensive to public morality.
What is a provisional patent application?
Provisional application provides the means to establish an early effective filing date in a patent application and permits the term “Patent Pending” to be applied in connection with the invention. The applicant would then have up to 12 months to file a non-provisional application for patent. The claimed subject matter in the later-filed non-provisional application is entitled to the benefit of the filing date of the provisional application if it has support in the provisional application.
What is a utility patent application?
A Utility Patent is issued for the invention of a new and useful process, machine, manufacture, or composition of matter, or a new and useful improvement thereof, it generally permits its owner to exclude others from making, using, or selling the invention for a period of up to twenty years from the date of patent application filing, subject to the payment of maintenance fees. Approximately 90% of the patent documents issued by the USPTO in recent years have been utility patents, also referred to as “patents for invention”.
Can I file my own patent application?
Yes, however the USPTO strongly recommends that all prospective applicants retain the services of a registered patent attorney or patent agent to prepare and prosecute their applications. The preparation of an application for patent and the conducting of the proceedings in the USPTO to obtain the patent is an undertaking requiring the knowledge of patent law and rules, USPTO practice and procedures, as well as knowledge of the scientific or technical matters involved in the particular invention.
Can’t I just sell my invention idea?
Maybe, but it is likely to be an uphill battle. Why pay for an unprotected idea that anyone else can copy Protecting your idea with a patent creates value for a potential purchaser. If a company purchases patent rights, they are buying an exclusive monopoly on the inventive concept for the term of the patent. They are the only entity that can make, sell, use or import a product embodying the inventive concept. Money the company invests in developing the product and bringing it to market can be recovered when the product has no competitors in the marketplace.
Inventors reap what they sow. The more they invest in developing and protecting the invention, the more value it has in the marketplace.
How do I make money on my invention?
Patents can yield financial benefits in a number of ways. Owners might receive royalty checks from licensing agreements. A patent owner may prevail in a patent infringement suit against a would-be competitor. A patent owner may sell the patent rights for a lump sum. They may sell a business that holds the patent (or exclusive licensing rights) for a handsome profit because of its limited monopoly position in the marketplace. A patent owner may be able to raise prices on his own product because his limited monopoly and the ability to exclude competitors in the marketplace for that product. A patent owner may be able to reduce prices on his own product and increase his market share because his limited monopoly on a manufacturing process gives him a significant economic advantage and cost reduction.
he process of “arguing” the merits of your application is referred to as “prosecuting” the patent application. This process typically takes from one to three years and is often similar to a negotiation with the patent office. A balance is reached between the limited scope of patent protection offered by the Examiner and the broader scope of patent protection sought by the inventor. This discussion is not intended to cover the full scope of patent prosecution practice, but to familiarize a non-patent professional with a typical prosecution scenario. It should be understood that additional and other actions may be taken by the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO). After filing a patent application, an Office Action from the United States PTO will usually be received within 18 to 36 months. (Some art units are so overwhelmed with applications that it may even be 40-44 months.) Typically, the first review of the application by the United States Patent & Trademark Office examiner is sent to the applicant in the First Office Action. This may be final or non-final
In some cases, the First Office Action on the merits is preceded by a Restriction Requirement from the Examiner. The Examiner may break the claims into distinct inventions and ask the inventor to elect one such invention for prosecution. The remaining claims may be immediately prosecuted by the inventor via a continuation application, or held in abeyance until the first application is allowed and prosecuted via a divisional application. Of course, the inventor may elect not to prosecute on the non-elected claim
Typically, in the First Office Action, the Examiner will reject some or all of the claims of the patent under 35 USC 103 when the Examiner believes it would have been obvious to create your invention in view of the prior art located by the Examiner or disclosed by the applicant. Other typical grounds for rejecting an application include 35 USC 102 rejections for lack of novelt
It is then necessary for the patent professional to argue that your invention is patentable based upon specified differences between the invention and the prior art cited by the Examiner. Prior art may generally include other domestic and foreign patents (both published and unpublished), articles, thesis, conference papers, and other literature. Legal arguments and case law may be used to refute the Examiner’s position. A telephone or in-person interview with the Examiner may also be arranged to find agreement on any issues of disput
Typically, the Examiner responds to the inventor’s Reply to First Office Action with a Second Office Action. While this may be final or non-final, it typically is final. The examiner may reject all of claims a second time, indicating that the inventor’s arguments were not persuasive. The examiner may set forth conditions (in the nature of required changes) upon which a patent would be allowed for some of the claimed subject matter. The inventor may make the “suggested” changes and request the patent to be issued in accordance with the Second Office Action. Alternatively, the inventor may request continued examination and another opportunity to address the Examiner’s rejections. The inventor may also make improvements or revisions in his invention, addressing the issues raised by the Examiner, and file a continuation-in-part application requesting priority to the parent application. The new subject matter will not be granted priority if not enabled in the parent case and the application may have some claims with one prior art date and other claims with a second prior art date
Once put in condition for allowance, the United States PTO will issue a Notice of Allowance. Upon payment of an issue fee (you have 3 months to pay) and attention to any formalities raised by the patent office, a patent will normally be published and issued within 3 months. These formalities typically include replacement of pending patent application or published patent application references with the issued patent numbers for any such patents that issued during the pendency of prosecution.
Foreign patent protection
Foreign patent protection
Most countries have patent laws, and a person desiring a patent in a particular country must make an application for patent in that country, in accordance with the requirements of that country. The laws of many countries differ in various respects from the patent law of the United States. In most foreign countries, publication of the invention before the date of the application will bar the right to a patent (In the United States, a patent may be obtained if applied for within one year of publication). Most foreign countries require that the patented invention must be manufactured in that country after a certain period, usually three years. If there is no manufacture within this period, the patent may be void or subject to grant of compulsory licenses.
The Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) provides centralized filing procedures and a standardized application format for patents in its 124 member countries. Timely PCT application provides an international filing date in each country which is designated in the international application and provides a report of search of the invention. It also delays the time period for filing the national applications providing up to 30 months from the original U.S. filing date to file in any of the 134 member countries.
U.S. law requires that inventors with inventions made in the United States obtain a license from the USPTO before applying for a patent in a foreign country. Such a license is required if the foreign application is to be filed before an application is filed in the United States or before the expiration of six months from the filing of an application in the United States unless a filing receipt with a license grant issued earlier. Any denial of a foreign filing license is indicated in the filing receipt mailed to each applicant. This may be the case for example in circumstances where the inventor involved technology necessary for national defense purposes. The USPTO may order that an invention be kept secret. If the invention has been ordered to be kept secret, the consent to the filing abroad must be obtained from the Director of the USPTO during the period the order of secrecy is in effect.
Foreign patent protection
For your protection and peace-of-mind, a ‘Non-Disclosure Agreement’ (NDA) is provided. You are presented with this document during the 'Submit Your Idea' process. In brief, the NDA states that we are prevented from disclosing your invention information to anyone else without your expressed written consent.