Can i get a patent on an idea [You Asked]

Last updated : Sept 4, 2022
Written by : Mui Ogbonnaya
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Can i get a patent on an idea

Is it possible to get patent for an idea?

Ideas cannot be patented. So, you do not have an idea, you have an invention, or you will have an invention if you continue on your journey and don't give up. You just need to get from the idea that inevitably begins the process to an invention, which is the culmination of the innovation part of the journey.

How much does it cost to patent an idea?

Need Help? A patent attorney will usually charge between $8,000 and $10,000 for a patent application, but the cost can be higher. In most cases, you should budget between $15,000 and $20,000 to complete the patenting process for your invention.

Can you patent an idea for free?

There are two ways you can actually patent an invention for free, sort of. If you cannot afford an agent or attorney, look to the Patent Pro Bono Program or the Law School Clinic Certification Program, both provided by the USPTO. The Patent Pro Bono Program pairs registered patent agents or attorneys with inventors.

How do I protect an idea?

The five essential legal tools for protecting ideas are patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade dress unfair competition laws, and trade secrets. Some of these legal tools can also be used creatively as marketing aids, and often more than one form of protection is available for a single design or innovation.

What types of ideas can be patented?

All patents must be novel and non-obvious, meaning that the idea or invention must be completely new. If someone else has invented your idea before or described it in a patent application, then your idea won't be eligible for a patent.

What is poor man's patent?

A poor man's patent is essentially writing out a description of your invention and then mailing that written description to yourself. This postmarked envelope supposedly acts to create the date of your invention as the date this written description was postmarked.

Does a poor man's patent hold up in court?

Even under the old system, i.e., the “first to invent” system, a “poor man's patent” standing alone, i.e, without a patent application, was worthless. You cannot access the court system and ask a judge or a jury to enforce a right that the U.S. Government does not even recognize as a right.

Can you sell an idea to a company without a patent?

Yes, you can sell an idea to a company without a patent. However, the company needs to enter into a contract such as a nondisclosure agreement (NDA). Otherwise, they can steal your idea. Unfortunately, many companies will not enter into an NDA.

How do I protect my idea from being stolen?

  1. Trade Secrets. Trade secrets are generally the least expensive strategy to keep an idea from being taken.
  2. Copyrights. Copyrights are generally the second least expensive strategy to protect a piece of work.
  3. Trademarks.
  4. Patents.

What are the 3 types of patents?

What kind of patent do you need? There are three types of patents - Utility, Design, and Plant. Utility patents may be granted to anyone who invents or discovers any new and useful process, machine, article of manufacture, or compositions of matters, or any new useful improvement thereof.

How long is a patent good for?

Patent protection is granted for a limited period, generally 20 years from the filing date of the application. Is a patent valid in every country? Patents are territorial rights.

Can someone steal my idea if I have a patent pending?

What Is Patent Pending Infringement? As soon as you file a patent application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), your invention is "Patent Pending." Once your application is submitted, nobody can steal, sell, or use your invention without your permission.

Can a manufacturer steal your idea?

Ideas alone are not protected under intellectual property law. There are two primary ways that you would be able to sue the company for stealing your idea. The first is if you did, in fact, reduce the idea to a protectable form before telling the company about it.

Can ideas be stolen?

Ideas are most likely to be stolen when action has already taken place — there is a vision and plan on paper. Several examples showed ideas being stolen when a plan-of-action, proof-of-concept, and research were attached to it. If you give someone a treasure map don't be mad when they follow it.

How much does a 20 year patent cost?

The full cost of obtaining and maintaining a U.S. patent over 20 years is in the range of $20,000 to $60,000. This sum is influenced by the type of technology being patented; the number of claims and drawings included in the application; the number and nature of rejections from USPTO; filing fees, etc.

What things Cannot be patented?

  • literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works.
  • a way of doing business, playing a game or thinking.
  • a method of medical treatment or diagnosis.
  • a discovery, scientific theory or mathematical method.
  • the way information is presented.
  • some computer programs or mobile apps.

How do you sell an idea?

  1. 1) Research Your Idea. The first step in selling your idea is to gather as much information as possible.
  2. 2) Establish Ownership.
  3. 3) Test Your Idea.
  4. 4) Identify Target Companies.

Can you patent an idea without a prototype?

Many inventors wonder if they need a prototype prior to patenting an invention. The simple answer is “no'. A prototype is not required prior to filing a patent application with the U.S. Patent Office. While prototypes can be valuable in developing your invention, they can also be costly.

What's the cheapest way to get a patent?

  1. Do-It-Yourself (Draft it and File it Yourself)
  2. Cost of Filing It Yourself.
  3. Still To Expensive?
  4. Cost of Filing It Yourself.
  5. Fiverr & Other Low Cost Options.
  6. If Budgets Allow - The Better Option Is to Use an Attorney.
  7. The Cost of An Attorney.

How do I protect an invention without a patent?

If you determine that the invention is probably not patentable, the most effective way to protect yourself is to have prospective licensees sign a nondisclosure agreement before you reveal your invention. This document is sometimes called an "NDA" or a "confidentiality agreement," but the terms are similar.

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Can i get a patent on an idea

Comment by Donn Hermez

did you know that a little innocent post on social media could get you in a whole host of trouble and in fact invalidate your ability to get a patent hey and welcome to how to get a patent on your idea i'm jd hoovener and i'm the ceo and principal here at bold patton's law firm i'm going to be here today talking about what it means to get a patent on an idea and some of the nuances all the way along the track got to know right out of the gate that when i say idea it kind of pangs me a little bit because i know that ideas well certainly valuable and i mean i talk about bold ideas right in my book ideas are by nature dying a dozen okay everybody's got ideas fun cool big small but what does it mean to actually bring an idea to an invention okay so the major difference is that invention is something you've really thought about you've thought through well enough to where you could describe it right how to make it and how to bring it about just in paper right on paper through drawings someone else could take what you wrote and go build okay that's an invention we work with inventors at bold patents we want you to move from idea to invention with us and with our help one thing i got to mention upfront too is that ideas sometimes can get carried away right these are big ideas right you think about what how could i improve and it oftentimes comes with some barriers right cost issues maybe government's got regulations blocking the situation something you have to know is that there's no requirement to build a prototype okay don't think you have to spend you know ten or even a hundred thousand dollars building your prototype if it's if the idea is that big you've simply got to be able to articulate it through words and drawings to move your idea from that phase to an invention is your patent eligible do you fit into one of the four patent areas is it patentable do you have a machine do you have a process do you have an assembly or do you have a composition of matter if you fit into one of those categories you're patent eligible and you can move forward if you have any questions about what it means and what those categories mean and want more information about whether your specific invention is eligible i encourage you to visit our website we've got lots of free resources there for you someone who's just getting started or someone who's maybe inventing their second project who wants a little more advanced information we've got that for you too and i want to show you really quickly in the book i wrote just a year and a half ago bold ideas the inventor's guide to patents this has got all the essentials that you need to help understand what's the difference between a patent and a trade secret patent and a trademark this is it grab your free copy downloadable pdf version on our website at today after you figure out whether your invention is eligible or not the next step is okay which inventors should i indicate okay um this sort of can be sort of coming out of left field but if you're not the only inventor you're actually obligated to include all the inventors in the application so when does someone actually become an inventor great question generally an inventor is someone that's added to the conceptual idea right there's a foundational principle some people get confused and think that someone who manufactures a product or helps with the prototype is part of the it should be listed as an inventor and that's not true right someone can be the architect the designer known as the inventor um and says please make this per this plan the person that makes it sure while they're well in their craft and good at their skill they didn't actually invent and come up with any aspects of it so if you have any more questions about inventorship again please give us a contact and if you're getting good value on this video we'd love to get this out to as many inventors as possible so please give us a like or thumbs up share this video with someone you know that could really use this information we want to help all inventors reach their visionary dreams all right so once you've kind of identified who the inventors are it's next important to understand the ownership so sometimes employees are also inventors right you've got day jobs and so something to really make sure you're clear about is that if you want to own this invention on your own you've got to do so on your own time and that includes using your own resources so if you're using a computer using a you know a 3d printer if you're using some sort of cad system you've got to understand your own resources need to be used and it can't be related to the job you have so another deep dive inquiry if there's sort of a gray area maybe you were on the clock maybe you're even assigned to a project and it's related to what you're trying to seek patent protection for get with us right away we need to make sure it's clear who's going to own this thing the last thing we want to do is end up taking your money and have the patent owned by your by your business okay all right so after inventorship and ownership is cleared the way to get a patent is to make sure you're going to be clear about what your goals are your goals business goals to you know own this thing long term and to have a business created around it and to make this a really long lasting business or is it your goal to really just license and sell it get it done if it's the latter you'll want to work directly with us as patent attorneys and just get your your patent packaged up so that it's most lucrative most valuable to someone looking to license and sell it if your goal is to start a new business i mean good on you right that's how this this country was founded that is what entrepreneurs are all about we love serving them but know that we are just a part of the professional sphere of the people you need to get a hold of to make this dream happen so we do our best to refer you to the people that we have trusted over the years to help our clients out succeed in business so let us know up front work with an attorney to make sure they're clear about what your goals are so you can get referrals to the people that you need to get help with down the road so the next thing to take a look at and this goes back to my social media question right at the beginning is okay if you've if you've talked about your invention and shared your invention there is a one-year statutory rule right one year that's 12 months if you have disclosed your invention online right talked about what your invention is showed a video about what your invention does to get feedback put it up on kickstarter or even sold your invention which includes even making an offer for sale more than a year ago you were ineligible for patent protection okay i know that's tough to hear so there are some workarounds okay so if you are under that category where you've actually disclosed your invention more than a year ago it could be right it could be that you've invented you made some improvements on your invention since you posted that so you could get protection over just those improvements and

Thanks for your comment Donn Hermez, have a nice day.
- Mui Ogbonnaya, Staff Member

Comment by Pablo

welcome back in our last video we talked about how ideas are worthless and one of the ways that you can actually make traction and action on your ideas is to get a patent there are lots of different types of patents I have six different patents I've filed provisional patents I've been sued by patent holders I've had patent trolls come after me I've deposed about patents and I'm here to tell you the pros and cons of getting a patent and what the process is if you're an inventor and you have an idea and you want to file for a patent so these are patent cubes from my work at Microsoft you can see thank you for your contribution a little bit about the patent law icon and Microsoft would give these as awards for people for what are called utility patents utility patents are the most basic type of patent and they protect a new type of idea or concept a novel way of doing something and these these particular patents are for work that I did on the Windows XP operating system there are four different types of patents utility patents are the most common the second type of patent is called a provisional patent and a provisional patent kind of hold to your place in line it prevents someone else from jumping ahead of you in taking that idea provisional patent is a lower-cost way of getting a patent the third type of patent is called a design patent in a design patent protects the design the look and feel of something it's not necessarily an invention but it protects how something looks and how something feels so you can imagine the look and feel of a particular car or a particular phone or particular shoe lots of companies that have a particular look and feel for their products will file a design patent to prevent knockoffs from being produced the last patent is called the plant patent unless you're building Audry - you don't really have to worry about that believe it baby it don't now if you're gonna file for a patent you're probably gonna want a patent lawyer filing patents is pretty complicated in terms of the documents that you need to produce the documents are formatted in a very particular way and a patent attorney whose experience with filing patents is going to save you time and money in the process that being said filing patents does tend to be expensive and patents can really rack up in terms of the cost lots of patent processes may cost tens of thousands of dollars so just be aware of some of these costs before jumping in and filing a patent now a couple ways that you can save money on filing a patent is by doing a little prep work before you go to your patent attorney so try to document what your invention does and how it does it write down your thoughts in plain English so it's easy to understand and if you're able to draw and illustrate some of them of how your invention works that's often helpful as well another way to save costs is by filing as what's called a micro entity if you're a solo independent inventor or if you're part of a very small company you can file for micro entity status and that saves you a little bit of money in terms of filing fees with a patent office the patent process itself can take a lot of back-and-forth even once you file a patent you can expect your patent to be rejected and then there's back and forth between your patent attorney and the patent examiner the entire process can often take as long as two or three years so just be prepared for a longer wait so because patents cost a lot of money and they take a lot of time it may not be the best thing for every small business so if you've truly invented something novel and unique something that's really unique and not out there then a patent may make sense it may protect your business from having knockoffs people stealing your idea but in many cases a patent can be a distraction so let's say you go through this process and you get a patent at the end of the day the patent is just a piece of paper and so the question is what do you want to do with this piece of paper there are three main strategies with patents the first is defensive patents and so with a defensive patent you really take that piece of paper and put it in a drawer you're honestly not doing anything you're keeping it there for defense if your company gets sued for some reason in the future you can go into that drawer and use that patent for defense so if someone's suing you for patent infringement you can say ah but I have this other patent it and I could sue you for patent infringement so why don't we all walk away and lots of companies have giant patent portfolios purely for defense to prevent other companies from suing them for patent infringement the other way to use a patent is for offense and that means going after other people who are infringing on your patent but be aware if that other company that you're suing and going after it has their own patent portfolio for defense a they could end up suing you back and B if they do see you back they could invalidate your patent making it completely worthless the third way to use a patent is for licensing and so if you're inventing a product or an idea and you don't actually want to build that product or idea but you want to license that invention to other companies to then go off and build that idea for you that's another way you can charge your licensing fee for your patent so depending on your company early-stage startups may not get a ton of early benefit from filing patents because using them defensively or offensively can be a real distraction to the core business small companies only have a limited set of resources so you may not want to spend those resources on either offensive patents or defensive patent portfolios if you do have a really amazing idea you can file a provisional patent and that kind of holds your place in line until you get better capitalization and more money and so that buys you a year of time to really figure out if you want to go file that full patent if you really have a unique design a unique visual approach to your product you can also file a design patent and those tend to be less expensive as well either way design patents provisional patents utility patents to help you set your company apart in terms of the design the products and the vision of what you're trying to build and I hope patents help you in your quest to build an amazing company I'm Gregg Ray's I focus on technology design and development and if you like that sort of thing hit subscribe thanks so much for joining me till the next one you

Thanks Pablo your participation is very much appreciated
- Mui Ogbonnaya

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