A large part of understanding how to go about getting a patent is to understand what a patent attorney does. Choosing a patent attorney should be your first step if you want to patent a product or idea. To prepare to meet with a patent attorney or agent, you will want to familiarize yourself with the following terms.
Patent - A form of intellectual property that protects one's invention for a set period of time.
Copyright - This protects printed work from being reproduced without permission.
Trademark - A trademark gives a company permission for the sole use of a product, business name or logo that people associate with their product or brand.
Intellectual Property - This is an idea, not a physical item and can be patented.
Copyright Infringement - When someone copies or reproduces an article, book, or other copyrighted document without written permission from the copyright holder or his or her copyright attorney or agent.
Patent Attorney - A licensed attorney specializing in copyright, trademark, and patent protection. They offer their services regarding inventions, documents, branding tools, and more. They help inventors obtain protection of their intellectual property.
Infringement Litigation - Legal proceedings in court that occur against someone who uses a patented, trademarked or copyrighted work without permission. Punishment for those convicted can include jail time and steep fines.
Filing Deadline - Once a patent application begins, the lawyer or law firm representing the inventor or creator must finalize all paperwork and submit it to the patent office within a set time period. If the application is not completed by the deadline, the intellectual property is no longer protected.
Patent attorneys and agents are law professionals who specialize in representing clients in all aspects of trademark and patent law. They are often hired by advertising companies, private corporations, and artists. Such professionals may also assist with intellectual property, trade, and copyright law. As patent law specialists, these attorneys work to protect company logos, pending trademarks, software rights, and inventions against copyright infringement.
These types of attorneys are necessary to protect the rights of companies and individuals, in order to prevent the theft of ideas, products, inventions, and designs. Without patents and trademarks, these ideas and designs would be up for grabs by the public, bypassing the original ownership rights. People need to know that when they come up with an original concept, it will be protected to any and all degrees. That's why patent attorneys and agents can be vital.
This branch of law is just one of many. Some lawyers specialize in just patent law, while other major law firms offer services involving many different practices of law. Patent attorneys and agents can be involved in litigation, settlements, claims, infringement disputes, and representation. They must obtain the proper license to operate as patent attorneys. This involves attending law school and passing the appropriate state bar exams.
When artists, companies, and inventors want to patent an idea or design, they must file an application with the appropriate agency, mainly the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Having this idea on file allows them to obtain the necessary patents and trademarks.
Those searching for more information on how to file a patent, or get in touch with a patent attorney or agency, can check the Internet. They will find information on how to go about the process, along with listings of local firms specializing in patent law.