How To Patent an Idea

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Table of contents

  1. Empty
  2. How to Patent an Idea
  3. How To Patent an Idea Without a Lawyer
  4. What is the Average Cost to Patent an Idea?
  5. Type of Application
  6. Geographical Scope
  7. Technical Scope and Complexity
  8. Quality of Written Disclosure Materials
  9. Ownership Structure
  10. Organization Size
  11. Patent Search
  12. USPTO Office Actions
  13. Maintenance Fees
  14. Wrap Up

Empty

{"blocks":[{"key":"7hjt5","text":"Have you got an exciting idea? Do you think that you can offer something different? Knowing how to patent an idea is a chance to protect your tangible and intangible investment. Your patent will also help you bring your concept to reality, so you can make money from it.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":270,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":270,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":270,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":270,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"7eag2","text":"In this article, we’ll explain the details of how to patent an idea to protect your concept from being stolen. So, keep on reading.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":131,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

How to Patent an Idea

{"blocks":[{"key":"eo4j5","text":"If you have an interesting idea that you want to bring to life, then you must patent it to protect your exclusive rights. You can either do this on your own or hire a patent lawyer.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":181,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":181,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":181,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":181,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"2m5m2","text":"If your invention is a simple one, you can file for the patent yourself. You will have to follow up the whole process, but you will save thousands of dollars. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":159,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":159,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":159,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":159,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"e3rva","text":"However, in some cases, your patent might be complex or involves several complicated legal issues, then you’re better off when you hire a patent lawyer. All the legal fees represent a worthy investment because the process will be easier. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":238,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":238,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":238,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":238,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

How To Patent an Idea Without a Lawyer

{"blocks":[{"key":"36kf5","text":"A lot of investors go through the whole process without any legal help as the US Patent and Trademark Office offers some help in this case. First, you need to make sure that your invention qualifies for a patent and fill the application form. Here is what you should do.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":270,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":270,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":270,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":270,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"356ji","text":"Keep a written record of your invention. Every description and diagram will come in handy when it’s time to patent your idea. You should record every detail, even how you got this idea. You should also have accurate data about any prototype you have and make sure that two reliable witnesses are willing to sign your notes.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":323,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":323,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":323,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":323,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"6djsf","text":"Make sure that your invention is new and worth being patented. It must be different and unique, or it will be rejected by the USPTO’s examiners. ","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":145,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":145,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":145,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":145,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"2ck2","text":"Do some research to assess whether applying for a patent is worth it. You might have a brilliant idea, but if you’re not able to market it or use it, then all the time, effort, and money spent on legal fees will be a waste. ","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":224,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":224,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":224,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":224,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"2btcm","text":"Patent search all the earlier developments in your field by reading all the technical and scientific journals to find out everything you need to know about related inventions. ","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":176,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":176,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":176,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":176,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"af968","text":"Prepare and file an application. It could be a regular patent application or a provisional patent application. Filing a PPA grants you a patent-pending status, and it’s easier and less expensive. Within one year, you need to file an RPA. ","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":238,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":238,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":238,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":238,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"av49c","text":"If the process seems too complicated, you will have to hire a lawyer to handle the whole process. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":98,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":98,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":98,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":98,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

What is the Average Cost to Patent an Idea?

{"blocks":[{"key":"768d9","text":"On average, you can expect to pay between $5000 and $16000 to patent your idea, depending on how simple or complex it is. Simpler inventions and ideas cost less to patent than more advanced and complicated concepts. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":216,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":216,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":216,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":216,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"9omtj","text":"Inventions and ideas are divided into several categories, so you can have an estimate of how much your patent will cost.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":120,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":120,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":120,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":120,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"67j7f","text":"Extremely simple inventions like a new electric switch will cost between $5000 and $7000.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":89,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":89,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":89,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":89,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"3t1js","text":"Relatively simple inventions that require a simple mechanism like a new flashlight will cost between $6000 and $8000.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":117,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":117,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":117,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":117,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"9a7mg","text":"Minimally complex inventions like a power tool will cost between $8000 and $10000. ","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":83,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":83,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":83,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":83,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"6qrqg","text":"Moderately complex inventions like RFID devices depend on new technology and can cost between $10000 and $12000.","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":112,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":112,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":112,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":112,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"48osr","text":"Relatively complex inventions that utilize some of the newest technologies, like a shock-absorbing prosthetic device, will cost between $12000 and $14000. ","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":155,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":155,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":155,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":155,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"cbigl","text":"Highly complex inventions like MRI scanners and satellite technologies cost between $14000 and $16000. ","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":103,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":103,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":103,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":103,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"5oequ","text":"Software programs and automated systems cost more than $16000. ","type":"unordered-list-item","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":63,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":63,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":63,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":63,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"4v58k","text":"Although these categories can serve as a guideline, as an investor, you might find this data to be a vague estimate because your invention or patent idea might be affected by several factors. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":192,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":192,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":192,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":192,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"5f8po","text":"The most important factor that affects the patent cost is the legal fees, which are directly related to the amount of time and effort your legal team will spend before getting the patent. In some cases, you might be able to hire a team that charges flat fees before you can acquire the patent. Here are the factors that affect the cost of getting your patent.\n","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":359,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":359,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":359,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":359,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Type of Application

{"blocks":[{"key":"d4je","text":"There are provisional patent applications that are cheaper than non-provisional applications. Provisional patent applications involve lower filing fees, while non-provisional patent applications cost more to prepare and file, and the cost doesn’t include follow-up or maintenance fees. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":286,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":286,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":286,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":286,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}},{"key":"4g9tv","text":"Design patents are also less expensive than utility patents. The latter need to be topped with maintenance fees to keep the patent in force for 20 years. In this case, the patent might cost more than $50000.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":207,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":207,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":207,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":207,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Geographical Scope

{"blocks":[{"key":"dfr0i","text":"If you want to protect your patent outside the US, you will have to file for an international patent, which can be extremely expensive. You will also need to apply for several separate applications for every country you want to protect your patent in.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":251,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":251,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":251,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":251,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Technical Scope and Complexity

{"blocks":[{"key":"2g5qu","text":"The complexity of your invention affects the amount of effort that needs to be made in drawing and describing your invention. This is why patents for more complex inventions cost more. If you have several inventions that you want to patent, you might consult a patent consultant or professional to see if you can combine them all in a single application.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":354,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":354,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":354,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":354,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Quality of Written Disclosure Materials

{"blocks":[{"key":"91brs","text":"Less detailed disclosure materials will be more difficult and time-consuming to assess and evaluate, even if you’re hiring a lawyer.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":132,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":132,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":132,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":132,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Ownership Structure

{"blocks":[{"key":"dhqsc","text":"Things could be easier if the inventors assigned the invention to a single company. But if the inventor has multiple owners or they disagree about the ownership of the invention, the total cost will increase.","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":208,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":208,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":208,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":208,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Organization Size

{"blocks":[{"key":"1o19t","text":"Most startups are considered small entities and are subject to a 50% discount regarding the USPTO fees. Bigger companies will pay more to patent their inventions. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":163,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":163,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":163,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":163,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Patent Search

{"blocks":[{"key":"4c28q","text":"There are several free and public resources like the USPTO’s patent database system, where you can find information about previous inventions. But it would be better if you could hire a professional to conduct this research. The cost of the patent search will differ from one industry to another. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":297,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":297,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":297,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":297,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

USPTO Office Actions

{"blocks":[{"key":"60rei","text":"This depends on the actions taken by the examiner. There might be more or fewer office fees depending on the actions determined by the examiner, which can be unpredictable and related to the examiner’s assessment. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":214,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":214,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":214,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":214,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Maintenance Fees

{"blocks":[{"key":"9dqvv","text":"These are the fees you’re supposed to pay after the patent is issued. They’re due 3.5, 7.5, and 11.5 years after the patent is issued, but you don’t have to pay them if you decide to abandon the patent. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":203,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":203,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":203,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":203,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}

Wrap Up

{"blocks":[{"key":"67a21","text":"Patenting your idea is an excellent way to protect your invention. In some cases, you can file for the application by yourself, but you might need legal help from a patent lawyer. ","type":"unstyled","depth":0,"inlineStyleRanges":[{"offset":0,"length":180,"style":"color-rgb(0,0,0)"},{"offset":0,"length":180,"style":"bgcolor-transparent"},{"offset":0,"length":180,"style":"fontsize-11pt"},{"offset":0,"length":180,"style":"fontfamily-Arial"}],"entityRanges":[],"data":{}}],"entityMap":{}}