There are several important steps in the patent registration process for design and utility applications. The patent application registration process helps inventors gain the exclusive right to use, sell, manufacture, and profit from their novel creations. Notably, this intellectual property procedure prevents competitors from creating knockoffs or stealing original ideas. If you’ve invented something unique, useful, and original, it could certainly be worth protecting. So, you should learn how patent registration can increase financial security, simplify commercialization, and maximize investment returns. Read on to learn about the end-to-end patent registration process for design and utility applications.
Search For Existing Patents And Prior Art
The patent registration process begins with an in-depth search for existing intellectual property and similar prior art references. Find out if there are any comparable inventions or ideas that have already received patent protection. Your attorney may recommend an advanced patent search — which will examine existing public disclosures, inventor journals, and global IP databases. To increase accuracy, you should avoid searching for existing prior art by yourself. Experienced patent filing attorneys bring years of process knowledge and filing expertise to the table. With their support, you can confidently navigate the IP searching process — then continue to filing with the USPTO. Definitely, prior art reference searching is an unavoidable first step of the intellectual property registration process.
Obtain Provisional Patent Protection
The next step in the USPTO patent registration process involves getting provisional protection. Obtaining provisional protection will denote your invention as “Patent Pending.” In short, this means your novel invention is currently in the examination process with the US Patent Office. You can only reach this stage once your provisional patent application (PPA) has been submitted and granted. Upon acceptance, you’ll be able to use the “Patent Pending” title for a limited one-year pendency. Absolutely, obtain provisional IP protection in the second phase of patent application registration.
Prepare A Formal Patent Application
Now, you are ready to prepare a formal patent application for registration. Your initial application must include several important documents and resources for successful utility patent filing. In this step of the process, your attorney will organize forms, attach filing fees, and prepare a written specification. You can additionally outline your intellectual property claims, abstract, summary, and drawings. Throughout the entire process, your lawyer will ensure that you understand the upcoming steps, alternative options, and chances of USPTO approval. Indeed, you’ll have to prepare a formal application to increase your chances of success in the US patent registration process.
Respond To Potential USPTO Objections
At this point in the patent registration process, it is time to respond to potential USPTO objections. It is fairly common for the United States Patent Office to raise objections — especially upon the first submission. In this stage of the process, work with your attorney to formulate an effective office action response strategy. A patent lawyer may recommend overcoming objections by making amendments to the specification, scope of protection, or design summary. You can additionally respond with arguments if you feel that office objections were made unfairly. Surely, carefully respond to possible USPTO objections during the patent registration process.
Receive Approval From The US Patent Office
In the last step of the patent registration process, you will receive final approval from the USPTO. You’ll receive a notice of approval once your applications meets USPTO requirements, expectations, and standards. Review your initial IP allowance grant with your patent attorney before signing. This document emphasizes issuance fees, maintenance requirements, and the total term. If you’ve reached this step in the process, you should consider keeping your IP attorney on retainer. This way, you can ensure your patent application stays legally binding and in force. Certainly, end the patent application registration process with official approval from the USPTO.
There are several critical steps to follow in the US patent application registration process. Traditionally, the process begins with comprehensive searching for existing patents and comparable prior art references. Next, obtain temporary protection with a USPTO provisional patent. From here, you are ready to prepare an initial version of your design or utility application. Be prepared to respond to any possible objections — also known as office actions. Once completed, you’ll receive official approval from the USPTO. Follow the points highlighted above to learn about the patent registration process for design and utility applications.