If you’re planning on doing everything yourself, the first thing you need to do is block off many weeks/months to learn how to do it properly; it’s a major commitment once you decide to apply for a patent on your own. After all, patent law is one of the most complex areas of law that exist. Now, I’m assuming you are doing it yourself to save money? Well if you end up doing it yourself and mess up, good chance you’ll end up spending at least 2x more than you would have if you hired an attorney in the first place.
Even if your application is initially approved, damage from doing it yourself can appear many years later when other companies’ attorneys notice the loops in your inherently weak application. If you feel that you cannot afford an attorney, you can minimize high-rate billable hours by doing as much research as possible on your own to verify the eligibility of your patent, and assembling all relevant documentation and material to reduce a lawyer’s billable hours down the road. Anyways, here are some tips on writing your own patent application:
- It is imperative for you to conduct a thorough of “prior art” before going through the burden of beginning the application. (side note – patent attorneys on offers free preliminary patent searches)
- Make sure you are clear and complete in your writing. Don’t give the good (but likely unhappy) people at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) a reason to deny you for lack of clarity. To achieve this, use objective observations rather than using subjective puffery.
- When writing the description, you are expected to include the following: title, technical field, background information and prior art, description of how your invention addresses a technical problem, list of figures, a, detailed description of your invention, and an example of intended use.
- It’s helpful (and sometimes overwhelming) to take a look at patents that have already been issued. Head to the USPTO and search for patents issued that are similar to your invention.
I invite you to check outto receive a fixed upfront price quote for your various patent needs. Patent lawyers should provide affordable prices to startups in order to grow their business. While hourly rates are prevalent in the legal marketplace, you should explore our alternative payment structures such as fixed, capped, contingent, hybrid and premium based fee arrangements. Don’t hesitate to contact me directly with any additional questions or concerns you have about protecting your IP in general.