What to do if Someone else has Patented my Idea?

To protect an idea, it is important to understand the benefits of patents. The process of how to patent an idea could help many individuals feel confident and relieved when becoming more knowledgeable about the steps needed. Having the assistance of a professional is beneficial, as well.

The Basics of Patent Protection:

You are excited about your new idea, and you can’t wait to be the next hot company. You rush to get it patented, but you find that someone else holds a patent for the same. Before you return devastated, wait and find out what can be done.

You should first get to know the different aspects of a patent. To prevent idea theft or to stop your rivals from copying your invention, it is required that you get a patent for your product or idea. You can contact a patent lawyer to help with the right procedure on how to patent an idea.

Know More About Patents:

A patent is a legal document, or rather, a right granted to a person who has invented a product. Getting a patent for your idea means no one else can copy, replicate or sell your patent idea. In brief, a patent gives you exclusive ownership to your product.

You will need to approach the United States Patent and Trademark Office or USPTO to apply for a patent. You can apply on your own, but at the same time, there are certain processes such as writing an application for the same, which need to be without errors.

It is best to get help from a patent attorney who can assist you with drafting the application and navigating you through the processes smoothly. Also, a crucial step in the application is to ensure that there are no similar products such as yours. The attorney can help you in the search and advise you about the next step.

Dealing With Similar Patents:

Just because you find that there is already a patent for a similar invention, you need not forgo your entrepreneurship journey. However, it is important to check first to discover if there is already a patent on your idea. If you do not, the result could cost you more in the future when in need of knowing how to patent an idea.

This is where the assistance of a patent lawyer can be handy. They can help you in deciding whether you can patent an idea or if you can acquire a similar but existing patent.

In such a case, the lawyer can help by further negotiating with the other party. It is necessary to take careful action if you suspect that the idea could require a patent. The protection is vital for security and protection from the threat of having outsiders use your idea without benefits to you. About this, a patent lawyer will also help to determine if you can go ahead with your patent application, even if there is already an existing one, considering they find some provisions to do so.

It will help you read more about patents and find out the different terms associated with them. For example, there are two kinds of patents, issued patents and published patent applications. The difference is that the former is an actual patent while the latter is still in the process of becoming one.

There is a simple way to differentiate between the two. If a product has an issued patent, it will have a seven-digit number. If it is in the publication stage, then it will have a year marked along with an eight-digit serial number. Example of a published patent for a product this year could be 2017/01342356.

There are thousands of patent ideas, and even if there is a similar patent that you are looking for, there is a good chance that the existing patent could be expired. Someone might have acquired the patent but might have abandoned it for several reasons. If they have not paid the mandatory maintenance fee, then the patent can be revoked.

If you are patenting a technical device or say, an operating system, you can find out how your product differs from the one with the patent. Once you find that there are indeed differences in your product and the other with the assigned patent, you can then go ahead with your application.

In short, do not be immediately deterred if someone else has a similar patent idea; there is a good possibility that you can acquire your patent even if there are similar products with patents.

Before you move on your application, ensure that you are aware of the different processes and procedures. Your patent lawyer can guide you on taking the right and relevant steps so that you need not worry about legal hurdles. You can now focus on kick-starting your dream entrepreneurial journey.

If you are in need of professional assistance for filing a patent, the Intellectual Property Attorneys of Paul & Paul are the correct choice for you. Contact their offices today by filling out an informational form or by calling at (866) 975-7231 to find out how you can file for your patent.


Get A Complimentary Consultation