Protecting Your Idea: Tips On Knowing If Your Product Is Patent Worthy


If you think you've created the next Rubik's cube or the most innovative operating system, your idea may need a patent. A patent secures your idea so no one else can use it to create a like product and sell it within the United States. In most cases, the patent is granted to the first person to invent the new product, but in order to maintain sole rights, you have to actually file for the patent. The big question is whether or not your idea is patent-worthy. These tips will help you decide.

Understanding Costs

Before filing for a patent, you need to ask yourself if you have the ability to produce and market your product. Fees for patents aren't cheap, so it might not be worth it to you to file a patent if you won't be able to put the idea into play in the first place. If you don't have the capital, you might consider seeing if you can get financing or obtain a sponsor or scholarship to help you market your idea, but unless you have the money to back your plan, you should probably consider putting off getting the patent until you can.

Considering Ownership

You can only apply for a patent if you are the actual inventor or co-inventor of the product. If you work for a company that actually had the idea for the invention, or if you were merely a financial contributor, you may not be able to get the patent. Before applying, you should conduct a professional search to see if there are any similar patents; while there may not be anything identical, you can at least get a general idea of how popular the market is for your idea.

Evaluating Usefulness

Inventions must have some sort of use to others before you can file for a patent. The idea must provide a benefit and be useable. Most product inventions tend to fall under this category. When filling out the patent application, try to be as specific as possible about what your invention does. This will assist the regulatory board in understanding exactly what your idea is and how it functions.

If you feel like you have a novel ideal and want to make sure the idea is protected from anyone else marketing it, it's a good idea to look into getting a patent. Understanding what a patent it and how it protects you is the first step before applying. 

For help from a patent attorney, contact a law firm such as Hamilton IP Law PC.


9 December 2015

Incorporating a Business: Why It Matters

Starting a home business is a great idea, but never think that it should not be incorporated. As I learned the hard way, working with an attorney to set up the business properly offers a lot of protections. I figured no one would want to bother with me and my little operation. As things began to take off, a copycat business sporting the same name and a slightly altered logo popped up on the scene. The copycat was able to nab some of my hard-earned business and left me out in the cold. It took help from a business attorney to protect my brand and get things back on track. If you think it's okay to wait until later to legally structure your operation, think again. Let me tell you more about what I should have done early on and why. Listen closely and I'll save you some grief.