Question What Is A Patent

What is a Patent?

A patent is the legal right to control the making, using, and selling of the invention for a limited time. In the United States, utility patents and design patents are issued for different lengths of time. Utility patents and plant patents are issued for 20 years from the application filing date. Design patents are issued for 15 years date of issuance. Contact Carson Patents to apply for a patent for your invention or idea. Read more about this patent FAQ in our what is a patent article. Also, check out our article on recognized patents.

Patent Faq About Prior Art

What is Prior Art?

Prior art is any patent, patent application, non-patent literature, or published disclosure anywhere in the world. Basically prior art can be anything ever patented, everything else that already has already been written about anywhere. Read more about what prior art is in our what does patentability mean article. Read about how to find prior art in our how to search for prior art article.

Question About How Long It Take From Patent Pending To Patent

How long does it take to get a Patent Issued?

According to the USPTO, it currently takes anywhere from 22 to 30 months to get patent issued. On average, the USPTO has a current wait time of about 24 months. There are several ways of getting patent applications prosecuted faster. Read more about getting your patent application prosecuted faster in our article on accelerating patent applications. .

New for 2023: Carson Patents can write and file accelerated examination patent applications under the USPTO’s Accelerated Examination Program for both utility and design patent applications. This USPTO program is meant to get to a final decision regarding allowance and issue, or rejection, within 12 months by adding a pre-examination search, an accelerated examination support document (AESD), and an examiner interview with the patent examiner.

Many factors can affect how long it takes to write, file, and prosecute a patent application in order for an application to have a patent issued. The type of patent application, the age or health of the inventor, whether the invention can enhance the environment, whether the invention can conserve energy, whether the patent applicant pays to accelerate examination. Read more about this patent FAQ in our how long it takes to get a patent article.

Question About The Cost To Get A Patent

How Much does it Cost to get a Patent?

If you qualify for USPTO Micro Entity Status, estimate $5-8k for a utility patent. There are five times, or events, in pursuing a patent for a utility invention that usually incur cost. Additionally there are other events that happen which can add cost. Our patent cost article answers a few more questions about the costs to get a patent.

What A Patent Practitioner Does

What does a Patent Practitioner do?

A patent practitioner provides patent services. Patent Practitioners help patent applicants seek patent protection for their inventions. There are two stages of patent services involved in seeking patent protection for your invention. The first stage is writing and filing for patent pending status. The second stage is patent prosecution. Patent prosecution is all the follow up correspondence with the patent office. 

Contact Carson Patents for patent help with your invention. Read more about patent practitioners. Always verify that any patent practitioner that you work with is licensed by the USPTO, check patent practitioner credentials at the USPTO

Patent Confidentiality

When it comes to Patents, what does Confidentiality mean?

Disclosures to patent practitioners about inventions is confidential. You may need or want a non-disclosure agreement with anyone else. Just like patent attorneys, invention disclosures to patent agents are covered by client controlled privilege. Information disclosed cannot be used or shared without your permission.

Patent agents hold the same basic professional liability insurance as that held by attorneys, just limited to the practice of patent prosecution. Read more about patent confidentiality. Always verify that any patent practitioner that you work with is licensed by the USPTO, check patent practitioner credentials at the USPTO.

Question About What The Patentability Criteria Are

What is Patentability Criteria?

The patentability criteria is a combination of two evaluations. The first is a determination of whether an idea or invention meets the criteria to be eligible for a patent. In other words, is the invention patent eligible subject matter?

The second evaluation is a three part determination. Firstly, whether it exists in the prior art. Secondly, whether it conflicts with another invention or idea. And, thirdly, whether it would be obvious to try for a person having ordinary skill in the art. 

Contact us for a prior art search and patentability study for your idea or invention. Read more about this patent FAQ in our what does patentability mean article.

Patent Claims Faq

What are Patent Claims?

Patent claims define the scope of patent protection. The claims define the subject matter of patent protection sought. The language of the claims determines what is patented. Claims must be properly written and supported by the specification. 

Carson Patents includes claim writing in our patent application writing patenting service. Also, we offer claim amendment and claim revision services as part of our patent prosecution services. Contact us for patent help within claims. Read about revising existing claims.

Patent Prosecution Faq

What is Patent Prosecution?

Patent prosecution is representing your invention before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) seeking an allowance and issue. Patent prosecution is the patent services needed to either [1] represent a patent application through examination, [2] appeal an examination decision, or [3] conduct opposition, reissue, or reexamination proceedings. 

Patent prosecution happens after a patent is pending and it occurs both before and after a patent is granted. Generally, pre-grant prosecution is these one of these five things: [1] responding to office actions. [2] filing amendments. [3] new revised claims. [4] petitions. [5] examiner interviews. Contact Carson Patents for help. Read more about this patent FAQ on our patent prosecution page.

Provisional Patent Application Faq

What is a PPA – Provisional Patent Application?

A provisional patent application allows you to file an application without formal patent claim(s), oath/declaration, or any information disclosure (prior art) statement. The provisional application is only pending for one year. It is essentially a place holder for a later non-provisional application. 

Contact us to start the steps to patent for your invention. Read more about provisional patent applications. Read about patent pending and the differences between provisional and non-provisional patent applications. .

Utility Vs Design Patent Faq

What is the Difference Between a Utility Patent and a Design Patent?

utility patent protects the way an article is used and works (35 U.S.C. 101).

design patent protects the way an article looks (35 U.S.C. 171).

You can get both design and utility patents for an article if invention resides both in its utility and ornamental appearance. Utility and design patents afford legally separate protection. But frequently, the utility and design of a product are not easily separable. Products may possess both functional and ornamental characteristics.

New Matter Faq

What is New Matter in a Patent Application?

New Matter is content not found in either the written description or drawings, involving a departure from or an addition to the original disclosure. It cannot be added to the application even if supported by a supplemental oath or declaration.

New matter can be shown or claimed only in a separate application. Inventors with office actions often ask this question. Contact Carson Patents for help. Read more about new matter.

Patent Drawings Faq

What are Patent Drawings?

Patent drawings are the figures, diagrams, flowcharts, and charts necessary for a patent application. Patent applications require drawings if the invention “admits of illustration.” Both U.S. and International (PCT) Patent Applications typically require good, properly formatted drawings. The USPTO and WIPO both have submittal requirements for the drawings (figures) filed with a patent application.

Carson Patents includes patent drawings in our patent application writing services if the claims or methods of the patent application make them useful or necessary to describe how to make and use the invention. Drawings are frequently necessary to support the claims or show relationships between sequences, operations, procedures, process flows, or process steps of the invention.

Patent Flowcharts Faq

What are Patent Flowcharts?

Patent flowcharts are a particular kind of patent figure. Flowcharts show sequences, operations, procedures, process flows, or process steps. They are useful in many types of patent applications. Flowcharts are recommended and frequently useful in software patenting to show relationships between operations, functions, procedures, and decision making. 

Carson Patents includes patent flowcharts in our patent application writing services if the claims or methods of the patent application make them useful or necessary to describe how to make and use the invention. Flowcharts may be best to support the claims or show relationships between sequences, operations, procedures, process flows, or process steps of the invention.

Invention Novelty Faq

What does “Novelty” Mean?

In order for an invention to be patentable, it must be new. This means it must not already exist in the world. In other words, novelty means an invention is not found in the prior art. Contact Carson Patents to start the steps to patent with a prior art search and patentability study for your invention. Read more about novelty.

Invention Non-Obviousness Faq

What does “Non-Obvious” Mean?

In order for an invention to be patentable, it must be non-obvious. An invention is obvious if there are any number of prior art references that, when combined, would result in essentially the claimed invention. In other words, an invention is non-obvious when it is not disclosed in the prior art. 

Contact Carson Patents to start the steps to patent with a prior art search and patentability study for your invention. Read more about non-obviousness.

Is A Patent Necessary Faq

Do you need a Patent?

Maybe, maybe not. Whether you need a patent depends. For example, if you don’t want to stop others from making, using or selling your new creation you would not need a patent. If your new creation is made with a trade secret kept process or material you may not need a patent. Read more this patent FAQ in our “Do you need a patent?” article.

If you have an invention you believe is patentable, and you protection might benefit your creation, we highly recommend you consult with a USPTO Registered Patent Attorney or Patent Agent. Carson Patents offers a free invention consultation. Schedule a video meeting using our free patent consult appointment link.

Question What Is Entity Status

What is USPTO Entity Status?

Entity status refers to the size of the business concern or business interest applying for a patent, conducting a patent validation/verification procedure, or paying a patent maintenance fee.

There are three entity status possibilities when paying fees at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The default (regular) is just called fees at the USPTO. These regular fees are discounted by 60% if you qualify as a small entity and by 80% if you qualify as a micro entity.

For example, application filing fees or patent maintenance fees can be reduced by as much as 80% if the applicant qualifies for the micro entity status. Read more about this patent FAQ in our entity status and USPTO fee reduction article.

Question About What Is Reduction To Practice

What is Reduction to Practice?

Reducing an invention to practice is making the invention. In other words, it is reducing the invention into a tangible form or taking the invention from thoughts and making it so that it can be used. A prototype is an actual reduction. A written description is a reduction constructed with words, or a constructive reduction to practice. Reduction to practice is related to prototyping. Read more about this advanced patent FAQ in our reduction to practice article.

Question About What Does Patent Pending Mean

What does Patent Pending mean?

Patent pending means a product or activity has an open patent application on file with the patent office. Filing an application for patent protection makes an invention “Patent Pending.” Either filing a provisional, non-provisional, U.S., or international (PCT & Hague) application results in pending status. After preparing and filing an application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), you get a filing receipt. The filing receipt will show the patent application number. Inventors often use the filing receipt or the application number as proof the invention is pending until it is published. Read more about this patent FAQ in our what does patent pending mean article.

Question About What Can Be Patented

What can be Patented?

What can be patented? In simplest terms, any invention that is a useful, new, and non-obvious action, thing, or product which is not an abstract idea, law of nature, or natural phenomenon can be patented. Actions are processes and methods. Things or products are machines, manufactures, and compositions of matter.

What generally cannot be patented are abstract ideas, laws of nature, and natural phenomenon. These things are not typically patentable because they are the basic tools of science and technology and should belong to all humans. Read more about this important patent FAQ in our what can be patented article.