Rights of the Inventor When Applying for a Patent

The patent application process can be complicated yet necessary to protect your rights as an inventor. You may find the patent application process is simplified by hiring a trusted Los Angeles patent attorney to help you organize your documentation and provide counsel should any problems arise during or after the patent application process.

Your Rights Before Approval

Some inventors may research an invention promotion company to patent and promote their invention. The Inventors Rights Act of 1999 was enacted to protect such inventors from the fraudulent practices of certain invention promotion companies. Furthermore, the act requires invention promoters to disclose in writing their positive and negative evaluations for inventions over a 5-year period, as well as their customers’ net financial success as a direct result of their promotional services.

In some cases, the use of these companies can be beneficial, but also very expensive and risky. Not all invention promotion companies have actual attorneys—who must be licensed by the state as well as the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)—some employ “patent agents” which are non-attorneys who have been approved by the USPTO.

A sound alternative to an invention promotion company is a Los Angeles patent attorney who has training in your specific field of invention. Your Los Angeles patent attorney can perform a patent search to ensure your idea or invention is patentable and assist you through the patent application process improving your chances of approval. Most importantly, your Los Angeles patent attorney will make certain that your rights as an inventor are protected.

Your Rights After Approval

If your patent application is approved, you’ve succeeded in guaranteeing ownership of your invention or idea. This gives you control over many things regarding your patented material including:

  • who may or may not use the patented invention;
  • who may license the use of the patented invention; and
  • the sale of the patent.

These rights are only guaranteed under patent law until you sell the patent to another party or the patent expires naturally.

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