How to complete patent search [FAQ]


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Last updated : Aug 13, 2022
Written by : Velda Flatten
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How to complete patent search


Comment by Timothy Nesseth

did you know that you have to use a boolean string to properly search prior art in the database you might not have found them stick around to learn about what you need to know before you do your patent searchhey everyone I'm JD Hooven our managing partner grab old patents law firm I'm so excited to be with you here today to talk about the six steps that you gotta take to perform a patent search the right waystep one making sure you understand what a patentability search really is and what it's not patentability kind of a long word right pad obviously you kind of get that patent is a-- is the grant the government gives you twenty years exclusive rights once you have your invention granting the patentability just sort of pass the question is this even possible someone else already invented to invent it and so to get a grasp on what the search really is what would encompasses you've got to start with eligibility so patentability comprises eligibility novelty non-obviousness and the last part utility so let's first talk about eligibility so eligibility is all the argued in the right ballpark is that's the right area of law for you and you might think okay well I've got this new invention is it really something that qualifies so first up is section 101 this is invention eligible and so we got to think about this alright look at the law the way it is you have three main areas the first one is is it an abstract idea so this invention is more akin to like a natural phenomenon or akin to late part of what's already out there in the world that is going to be not eligible for patenting another thing is not eligible for patenting is processes that are purely financial or mainly human interactions those are not that multiple either the patentability opinion is something that's generated by an attorney it's not something put together by a patent agent or someone else in the industry in marketing and that sort of thing nothing's mentioned any names but there are plenty of firms out there touting their expertise packs that aren't necessarily the patent attorneys if a patent attorney is you may not know you've had those for four years of engineering school go to law school and then pass a patent bar on top of the state level so patent attorneys fine credential and they're trained to specifically help you the inventor so what a patentability search is is researching worldwide looking at not just the United States but every country or anywhere on the internet an information about conventional invention like yours could be found the examiner once you get your applications submitted is gonna do this same thing here at bol we put ourselves in the shoes of the examiner to do the best job we can to make sure we could do the information you can make the best decision so by searching the world we've got to start with the best sand databases and believe your mind the Google is where we start so we're gonna get into that down the road another thing about patent searches art it's not just a matter of searching in your exact invention as we're going to talk about invention disclosures key and so we're talk about how how it is that your invention may first look and as we thought what your invention will actually expand it out from there lately if it's cheap under five hundred dollars even hundred thousand dollars that's kind of indicator that there's really probably not an attorney involved and I actually seems we get clients to come in and see us and say look I've already got the patent searches are done let's move on to the next stage and they'll bring in this you know phonebook size copy of a patent search and it was produced you know in mass volume to kind of seem like it was a very enriched thorough search when they just put it up the whole length of the bad documents that they found and just printed in a big volume what these searches tend to lack is an actual opinion that you can rely on to make a decision about what you poor or not with your patent application you may not know patent applications in the whole process be many thousands of dollars so it's no small drop in the bucket let's make a decision about this so a patent search alone is good but it's not what you need to move the next phase of need is an opinion by a patent attorney step 2 invention disclosure the inventor you right you've got your invention this is your baby and we get that when you come to an attorney like this we're going to sit down with you and talk but sure your invention and how you might have I'm bringing this to market but what's bigger bigger picture mention in terms of what it could look like and all the alternative embodiments that could it should be that's what we be performing our patent building search on this greener version of your invention think about other materials you could use think about the ways of this the two parts could fit together if it wasn't using the vault right some some took the fastenings no rivet or a wound I'll say a couple that's that's from a detachable removable piece lots of different ways that parts can move and change interchange and even be part of a new industry so if it's a safe part of our job is to help thing better expand their inventions so we can conduct a really good proper search part of what's involved in extend doing this expansion as I mentioned is getting to the heart of the invention and giving the inventor to tell us about their invention and so this process called the invention disclosure process calls them to fully relate what they've been through some of the first things we talk about with invention disclosure is the history history right how far back did it did it first it can see when did the inventor or co-inventors first create this invention that's what we want to look back on harness the intent what was involved in that right up front moment then it's very important from their stuff at a time line when the invention if ever was disclosed or sold to the public unfortunately to spend more than a year since you've published or sold your invention it's not eligible for fighting so this first step of getting the history down is key the second step you're going to talk about within step two is making sure you get the invention employments or employer history figured out too often times we have inventors that are working day jobs and you might be - if you're listening and watching this inventions can certainly be created on the job or even after hours it's important understand that many companies have very strong rigorous contracts that will actually cause you to have to assign getting given rights to your invention to your employer if it was invented on the job and even if it's related to your job you did it off hours they have rights to own them so that's important to understand the employer employee really moving forward the next part of the invention disclosure process is taken like at the authority if there is one for Hardware consumer products this is important because it getting your hands on it releasing photos or videos of the actual invention now if the patent attorney see the different features this is important


Thanks for your comment Timothy Nesseth, have a nice day.
- Velda Flatten, Staff Member


Comment by opgevoeder

all right today i want to show you guys how to go through into a patent search um using the united states patent and trademark office.gov you can see that in the assignment that is got a blue link right here what we're looking for is we're looking for building blocks or toy blocks similar and somewhat related to our project here one of the things you have to understand is if you are looking at creating and designing something new a good part of that prudence is to go through the process and making sure that somebody else hasn't already invented it so that's what we're going to do today we're going to do a patent search and see if what we can find when we start looking at toy blocks you know obviously we're working on our castle project but we want to see what's out there and uh just in case we uh come across that we know whether it's already designed by somebody else or maybe it's not nothing that's patented and we can go ahead and use it so if you click on the uspto.gov on here it jumps you to the site here uspto.gov which is the united states patent and trademark office this is where they store all the patents that have been approved an approved meaning they've gone through the inspection and there are no other patents like that a patent is a device a document that gives you the um as the original owner or designer the full rights to to the protections of the design that you've created or if it's a trademark let's say like the coca-cola trademark or the little swoosh for nike those are all patent and protected so people just can't imitate and copy and use those and make money off your intellectual rights so that's what the united states patent and trademark office does is they look at your designs things that you are are have created and protect those from obviously other people using them illegally so we get to the site here we were looking at patents today so if we go here to the patents tab you can see that we got lots of different ways of going through the process i'm going to go ahead and tell them no thanks um now what we want to go through is take a look at and and do a patent search so you can come down here to patent searches and in the patent search area here they've got all sorts of different things to go through that you can go ahead and click and learn and spend tons and tons and tons of hours we're going to come down to searching patents text and you can see this is since 1976. so if somebody patented wooden blocks before 1976 it's not going to come up in this particular area we'd have to maybe do a different type of search but we're going to go ahead and do that patent search process now if we happen to know um the image or the numbers or whatever we can search for patents especially if we know the number all the way back to 1790. so you start thinking about how old our country is we filed our declaration of independence in 1776. so looking at this 14 years later we have patents or intellectual rights that go all the way back to that particular date so think about all things have been invented in the last 200 plus years in the united states and people wanted to protect those rights the designs that they created this is where they did this in the patent office but we're going to go ahead and do a quick search so i'm going to click on the quick search link right here you can see it says query meaning i need to look for something we're going to inquire into something and i'm just going to type in here blocks building blocks and the second term i'm going to type in is just toy because i'm actually looking for something that has to do with toy blocks it's going to take those two terms it's going to go out into the information highway out there for united states patents and actually look and see if any of those two terms pop up in the process so this might take a couple seconds going through here as you can see the results of searching for blocks and toy there's 7972 patents so we start looking at uh people that specialize in working with patents part of their process is going in and understanding and knowing the patent office and where to look and how it'll look and so forth so when you're looking at inventing and creating and making that patent to protect your intellectual rights there's companies out here that do this do this process to help you along and that's why you know when people ask me hey how much does it cost to you know create and complete a patent and patent something in the united states patent office i tell them it's in the tens of thousands dollars i would i would imagine be at least 10 000 sounds like a lot of money but you're looking at the process of taking something and protecting it and it could be a million dollar design we don't know but we have to make sure that we're not copying somebody else's intellectual rights so here we go you can see it says you know 1 through 50 next 50 so literally you're searching through and you're coming through the process and trying to find out you know what's in here and what seems like it might be similar to what you're looking for you can see that we got composition stuff here we got modular structures think about legos those are modular structures that could be one of the patents for legos i don't know we didn't look into it but camera wall plates and security cameras so there's all sorts of stuff when you look through here but as we get down here you can see i already clicked on this before building and toy i've got toy building here which might be very close to what i'm looking for so let's take a peek at this particular patent and what comes up is a lot of information that you'd have to read through in other words uh going through this process the abstract is going to give you kind of an idea of what's going on with the invention or the design and what it basically does it's an abstract it's a short you know paragraph on tied into whatever the design is you can see that we look at the inventor mark donahoe from st louis is listed on here and again you can look at the application number uh the filing date and this was january 22nd of 2019. now i can't tell you this is the original or refiling whatever but as you go through the process and looking down through here you can see that there's several applications so he's gone through a number of different patents but what i'd kind of do is as you go down through and look at some of the reference sites you can see that some of the stuff goes back like for instance this one here 1922. so i mean if you want to go ahead and search back in some of these older documents and that ties to that it'll get you back further in as you're looking says there's no text available we look at images it may give us an image of something that was similar look at that i don't know if you guys can see and understand what this kind of looks like but i look at the saying oh that's kind of like a stick log a toy stick log looks kind of like lincoln logs so to speak and again the original designer you can see they've got a couple notches here in the tenant couple dados and the patent that this was building blocks for school purposes the app


Thanks opgevoeder your participation is very much appreciated
- Velda Flatten


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How to complete patent search