The third step in seeking patent protection for an invention is filing the patent application
For design and utility patents, the third step to patenting is patent application filing. Patent application filing is the submitting of a complete and properly formatted patent application to the patent office. In addition to the proper forms, a complete and properly formatted patent application includes two important documents: firstly, a specification; and, secondly, the drawings. Filing an invention’s patent application is conducted either: firstly, online (electronically); or, secondly, via postal mail.
File Online or by Mail
Patent application filing is conducted two ways: firstly, electronically (online); and, secondly, via postal mail. Filing either US and/or International (PCT, and Hague) patent applications is conducted either: firstly, online; or, secondly, by postal mail.
Filing a US design or utility patent application online is the preferred method.
Patent Center controls electronic application filing at the USPTO. Filing an application in Patent Center requires an online account. The account will also permit tracking of the application. The online account is available for free on the Patent Center page.
The International applications are the PCT for utility patenting, and the Hague for design patenting (registering). The USPTO accepts the International applications electronically through Patent Center. In addition, the World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO) accepts the PCT and Hague applications directly. WIPO has a single online entry point for intellectual property (IP) applications. WIPO accepts both PCT and Hague applications filed directly.
Postal Mail Filing
To file by mail just mail in the specification, drawings, all the forms, and payment of the filing fee to the USPTO. Mail processing for both US and International patent applications is available. The USPTO recommends and encourages electronic filing. The USPTO has lower patent application filing fees for electronic filing. In other words, paper filing by mail has higher patent application filing fees.
Once filed, your invention is patent pending. Filing online generates an electronic filing receipt. In addition, the patent office will review the submission to ensure all of the required parts are present and in acceptable format. If the application is complete and proper, the patent office will send a filing receipt. However, if the application is incomplete or improper, the patent office will send a notice of missing parts, or a notice of incomplete application.
Carson Patents® can help file for patent protection for your invention. Contact us to start the steps to patenting your invention or idea in a utility or a design patent application. Read about patenting costs.