Sample Patent Flow Chart

Introduction: Attached below is a sample patent flow chart.  I start with the inventor’s conception of the idea.  Included are the steps to be taken to reach the point of possible patent filing.  (Note my sample assumes that a provisional application is filed first.  However it is possible to go directly to the Non-provisional application…

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Post Patent Grant Challenge

INTRODUCTION: After you have achieved the award of a patent, you may still be subject to challenge from competitors.  You may face a post patent grant challenge.  Part of the America Invents Act or AIA the USPTO established a procedure called a Post Grant Review.  The procedure gives third parties up to 9 months after the grant of…

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What NOT To Do Before You File

Introduction This is an update of my previously published WARNING.  If you have made an innovation, you don’t want to lose the right to ownership of your invention and the opportunity to exploit it for possible income. The easiest way to lose your rights is to make a public disclosure of the innovation. Public disclosure…

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Patent Goulash For Engineers

INTRODUCTION: I wrote an article in October 2019 for mechanical engineers (and others) warning that the Section 101 morass, i.e., Patent Goulash, was not limited to computer software business methods or medical diagnostic procedures.  The long twisted arm of unpatentable “natural law” and “abstract ideas” was extending to patent applications for improved mechanical structures.  See Mechanical Engineering and…

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Priority Review: Move to Front of Line

INTRODUCTION: The wait time between filing you patent application and the first office action can be frustratingly long.  Priority Review Track One. See my earlier article for Expedited Examination.  The duration depends upon the Group Art Unit (GAU) to which your application has been assigned.  You may have limited ability to influence the GAU to which your application is…

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Design Choice and Obviousness

INTRODUCTION: Many of my recent articles have focused upon the whether an innovation is eligible for patent protection.  This has been described as a Section 101 issue.  Many innovations have been barred from patenting as being merely abstract ideas.  This is a confused area.  However, even if an innovation is deemed patentable subject matter, it still needs to be…

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Appealing an Obviousness Rejection

INTRODUCTION: This article looks at appealing an obviousness rejection. It should not be a surprise that there are obstinate patent examiners.  For whatever reason, they can be determined to not allow your patent application.  Frequently, this situation can be experienced when an examiner rejects your application based on alleged obviousness (a 103 rejection).   An assertion of obviousness…

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“Groundbreaking” But Not Patentable?

INTRODUCTION: It is clear abstract ideas are not patentable. However the topic is much more complex. I have written a number of articles regarding the fog shrouded abyss related to patenting computer business methods and medical diagnostic procedures.  The Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (commonly known as the “Federal Circuit”) continue to…

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Design Patents: $1 Billion Stepchild

INTRODUCTION: Everyone remembers Apple being awarded $1 billion in damages against Samsung for copying the design of Apple’s iPhone.  The award was the product of Apple obtaining a patent on a smart phone design, particularly the curved corners of the smart phone frame.  Samsung’s copying of a curved frame probably seemed a trivial detail to some.  However Apple…

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Patent Classification Review

Introduction Crafting the specification, and particularly the claims, of a patent application can be critical to the chances of ultimate allowance of the application into a legally enforceable patent.  This applies not only to distinguishing your invention over the prior art or confirming that your invention is eligible for patent protection, e.g., not merely an abstract…

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