What do you do when you have the next great idea? The idea that could change the world and anyone would love to get their hands on it.
The best way to protect yourself and your plans is to patent an invention idea. Taking out a patent gives you the right to stop people from making, using, importing or selling your invention without your permission. A granted patent can remain in force for up to 20 years.
Obtaining a patent does not guarantee commercial success and is just one of the issues you should consider when looking to commercialise your ideas.
A Patent is an exclusive monopoly granted by the Government various countries to an inventor over his invention for limited period of time. It is one of the legal document explains about the new invention used to protect the inventors idea using various claims.
There are several different types of patents and its important to know which one to file. Utility patents are for machines or mechanical processes. Design patents cover a new design for a manufactured item. Finally a plant patent may be granted for someone who invents, discovers or reproduces a new variety of plant.
A patent also allows you to license others to use your invention – generating royalties, which can provide an important source of revenue for your business.
There are strict rules that determine what can and can’t be patented and a patent may not always be the best way for you to protect your invention.
When you first invent something, it is important to write up a complete, dated description of the invention. Later, this record will provide evidence that the inventor possessed the invention on the date indicated. In the United States, a patent invention is given to the first to invent, not the first to apply for a patent. The inventor must sign and date the description and have one other witness sign and date it as well. The record can be simple and short, but should include enough details to convey clearly what the invention is. In most cases, it will utilize patent drawings or diagrams, which show how the invention works.
To apply for a patent, you must be the legal owner of your invention. If you created it as part of your work as an employee, you are unlikely to be the legal owner. Remember, the fact that you can get a patent doesn’t necessarily make it worthwhile. You should carefully weigh up the pros and cons before deciding whether you should apply. Read a basic guide to patents on the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA) website.
Once your application is filed, it will be assigned to a patent examiner for analysis. This process typically takes about a year from the filing date. The examiner will do an independent search for existing patents. If they find something they believe is similar to your idea; they may reject the patent application.
You should never publicly disclose details of your invention before applying for a patent. If you must reveal information about your invention, you are strongly advised to consider entering into a non-disclosure agreement.