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What is a Patent?

A grant by a government of monopoly rights to the owner of an invention to manufacture and sell it for a defined number of years, conditional on the owner being willing to immediately reveal the ideas incorporated in the invention, so that they can be published for the advancement of knowledge to the general public and may be (utility, letters, design, or plant).

The exclusive right of an inventor to make, use, or sell his invention for a period of 20 years. A patent is an asset that may be depreciated over its remaining life. The sale of a patent usually results in long-term capital gain treatment.

Generally, a patent is granted under the laws of each country, and hence a patent is only effective in the relevant territory. The patent term will be governed by national law, which for many countries is 20 years calculated from the filing date.

Why Obtain a Patent?

A patent enables the owner to exclude competitors from copying an invention. This exclusivity enables the costs of research, development, tooling, and market development to be recovered. Patents can be transferred in much the same way as other types of property. For example, if the patent owner is unable to exploit the invention directly, a patent can be sold outright or licensed to others. In deciding whether patent protection should be pursued, one major issue is whether the financial return expected from the period of exclusivity justifies the costs in pursuing and maintaining a patent. For example, where large amounts of time and money have been spent on research, development, and new production equipment. These are fixed costs and will undoubtedly need to be recouped over a period of time, and a patent can provide the necessary umbrella of protection. This is particularly desirable where a new product can be readily reverse engineered by competitors who would not be concerned with recovering research costs.

What does “Patent Pending” mean?

The words "Patent Pending" is a phrase that is often seen on manufactured items. Patent pending means that a patent has been filed on the invention and is awaiting a patent grant.

It is used here, as a warning that a patent may be issued to cover “Magic Moulding”, “Quick Corners”, or “V-Notcher” and anyone who copies it should be aware because they will be infringing once the patent issues. They will be the subject of a law suit, at that time. Once the patent issues, the phrase "patent pending" will be replaced with a Patent Number XXXXXXX." My “Quick Corner” Patent Number is: US 7,712,240

Applying the patent pending phrase to an item when no patent application has been filed can result in a fine. The term patent pending may only be used after applying for a patent.

Once a patent application is filed, it inherits the pending status, and is published, without changes, for anyone to read and examine after 18 months.

My Experience

The Magic Moulding Application was submitted as a Provisional Application while I researched the concept to see if it had already been done. Had I found the concept had already been used by someone else, I would have ended the attempt to patent the idea. But nothing had ever been made that was similar to the concept, so I advanced the application to the next step. The Provisional Application was converted to a Non-Provisional Application with amendments added, and it will be updated and republished by the patent office shortly.

The examiners at the patent office analyse the text, structure, prior art, claims, and a host of other criteria both nationally and internationally, and may require the applicant to make appropriate changes to insure that the invention is novel or original and meets all of the required specifications prior to approval. If the applicant fails to make the required changes within a specified time period, the application is rejected. Once the required changes are made and the examiner is satisfied that all criteria has been met, a patent is granted.

This process can take several years and its not for the faint of heart. Anyone contemplating applying for a patent for a brainstorm must search the history for similar ideas, which may be referred to by other names than expected, whether patented or not.

A Naysayer will write you off as a nut or a lunatic because they think everything has already been invented or they have already seen or heard of your idea before, or that someone offshore will copy it, or some may even be envious, because they may not want to see you succeed, while they will not.

All of this makes the process of inventing or innovating a very lonely undertaking, because it must first, be thought up, proven to work, committed to paper and drawings, and then scrutinized by some of the best minds in the world.

Most important of all, the idea must be capable of being turned into a product that’s also capable of generating a profit for everyone involved, because what good is it, if no one wants it or will ever buy it?

We started our research with the end users and worked backwards to see if it could be made within the guidelines that they had set for us.

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My New Patent &

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Patents are not easy to get!
 

It can take many years of filings and responding to information requests made by patent examiners, who parse and scrutinize every word in the application.

Only after they are satisfied with your timely responses and they have not found any prior art, will they allow the your application to proceed. 

That’s why it’s extremely gratifying when an application proceeds and is subsequently issued without any objections from the examiners.

I’m All Excited! I’m All Excited!

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