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Patent FAQs

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What does patent pending and patent applied for mean?

These terms are used by a seller or manufacturer of an item to tell the public that they have applied for a patent on the item and that it is on file with the US Patent and Trademark Office.

Is there any way that the US Patent and Trademark Office will share information in my application while it is pending?

No – your application is held in the strictest of confidence by the US Patent and Trademark Office until the application is published or the patent is issued. A member of the public may request a copy of the application file after the application has been published and when the patent is issued a copy of it may be purchased from the US Patent and Trademark Office.

Can I write to the US Patent and Trademark Office about my filed application?

Yes, you can inquire about the status of your application with the US Patent and Trademark Office. However if you have an attorney, all inquiries should go through them as the US Patent and Trademark Office will not correspond with both you and your attorney.

Do I have to go to the US Patent and Trademark Office to do business with patents?

No, most of the business is done by written correspondence.

The patent I have was done with more than one person – who will the patent be granted to?

The patent will be jointly given to the people who are joint inventors. However if only one of the people had the ideas for the invention in order for someone else to make it, the patent will be in the name of the person with the original idea.

Does the US Patent and Trademark Office control the fees that are charged by attorneys and lawyers for the services they provide?

No, the US Patent and Trademark Office doesn’t control the fees, this is between you and your lawyer.

Do I have to find an attorney myself or can the US Patent and Trademark Office help me with that?

You have to find your own attorney yourself to help you with your patent application.

Are there organizations that can help me with assistance in developing and marketing my invention?

Yes, there may be some organizations in your area that can help you.

Is there a state government agency to help me with development and marketing of my invention?

Yes, in most states there are planning and development agencies that seek out new product inventions and process ideas. You can look up the information in the phone book or call your governor for more information.

Can the US Patent and Trademark Office help me with the marketing and development of my patent product?

No, the US Patent and Trademark Office can’t help you with any of the business transactions that are involved with the marketing or development of a new invention.

Do I need an attorney to file for a patent?

It’s always a good idea to run this type of business through an attorney. It’s not impossible to do it yourself, but the documentation is quite complex and complicated.

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