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Common problems when developing patents

You’ve created a unique invention or process. You probably know that one of the next steps you should take is to get patent protection for your idea. However, doing so is easier said than done. The application process involves more than filling out a few forms. The process can be lengthy and complex. Overlooking certain details can leave you without any type of intellectual property protection.

Here are some common problems that people run into when developing patents:

Not providing enough detail on a provisional patent application

There are two types of patent applications:

A nonprovisional patent application is thoroughly reviewed by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Upon approval, you will receive a patent for your invention.

A provisional patent application will grant your inventions “patent pending” status. These applications are attractive to inventors because they are not subject to rigorous review. In fact, they may not even be reviewed at all. The problem is that many inventors fail to take these applications seriously. This application must support the subject matter contained in your nonprovisional filing. This means any drawings or written descriptions should be relatively detailed. You should ensure all necessary information concerning your invention is at least touched upon in your provisional application.

You are seeking a patent for an idea

Any one of us can come up with a fantastical idea. However, without a means to back those ideas up, they remain in the realm of fantasy. Patents will not be granted for theoretical principles or methods for approaching a problem. You must have something concrete to receive patent protection.

You fail to perform an adequate patent search

You may have performed an internet search for your invention and found no results. Perhaps you searched for your invention on the USTPO website and didn’t see anything that matches what you’ve come up with. A cursory search can be a good place to start, but it is by no means exhaustive. It is often worth your time and money to conduct a professional patent search. This can help save you the frustration of going through the entire patent application process only to find out that a similar patent already exists.

Legal counsel can help you avoid patent development problems

You do not have to struggle with the patent development and application process on your own. A skilled attorney can help guide you through this process. The lawyers at the Wang IP Law Group, P.C., can help. Contact them today for all of your intellectual property needs.

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