Don’t Pay for What You Don’t Need
I’m pretty conservative when it comes to spending money I don’t have to spend. And in some cases you don’t get what you pay for; there are times when less is more, if you know what I mean…
I’m talking about a big law firm for an independent inventor or small business. The reason to go with a large patent law firm is because you have a constant stream of inventions that you have to apply for in different technical areas, you often have to defend the patents you hold, you hold foreign patents… In other words, a big patent law firm is for a big company. A big patent law firm has a staff of attorneys that specialize in different fields… one in computer design, one in computer software, one in information systems, one in mechanical patents, and so on. Some of its patent attorneys will concentrate only on patent litigation. The big firms will have trademark specialists and trademark litigation specialists. And don’t forget the number of registered patent searchers on their staffs, contract lawyers, paralegals, secretaries, receptionist…Are you getting the picture?Step by Step Patent Process
Just as in other fields of law, patent lawyers are specialized, so don’t pay for what you don’t need right now. You don’t need someone to defend your patent against an idea thief (okay,alleged idea thief); you need someone to “argue” your patent application to the patent office. When and if it comes time to defend your patent in court, your attorney will refer you to a patent litigation specialist. If you have the opportunity to license your product, you should find a good contract lawyer to negotiate your license agreement for you.
One thing at a time. Don’t pay for personnel overhead… and don’t pay for expensive advertising like prime time television spots.
Figure Out What You Do Need
If you are eventually going to apply for an NPPA, whether on your own or with the help of an investor or licensee, you should start out by choosing the person who you want to represent you all the way through the patent process starting with your PPA.
What you need then is a
1) Qualified patent attorney with
2) A specialty in your field of invention and
3) Experience filing patents in your field of invention,
4) A high success rate (80% or better) obtaining patents that he represents in your area; and
5) A high correlation between his patent opinions and patents awarded.
You also need someone who
6) Will take a fresh look at your invention, and still
7) Consider and incorporate, where possible, your own analysis of your invention, as well as your market and preliminary patent research, and where possible,
8) Avoid repeating your efforts unless need be; and
9) Provide you with reasonable approximate charges for each service after your first meeting; and
10) You can work with. (You do not have to like your attorney; professional respect is all that is needed.)
Add other important factors to this list, and then rank them from most important to least. In the next part of this article, we will explore ways to obtain the information we need to do our due diligence.
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For more advice and information, make sure to check out our section Invention Information Guide for Inventors. Myra Per-Lee Featured BloggerInventorSpot.comfor more articles on the Invention Process visit my blog