Patent Basics

The “Walking Malpractice Suit”

The Attorney/Client Relationship for Patent Attorneys has Some Weird Nuance. The fiduciary responsibility (and the fear of being sued for malpractice) is why attorneys explain everything in dreadful detail.  It is not just that they bill by the hour.  The attorneys are trying to lay all the options out on the table and make sure…

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HP CapShare: How a failed product yielded huge revenue

HP’s CapShare hand-held scanner is a great example of patents that come from problems solved on they way to the vision – not the vision itself. Patents can be vehicles for spinning out technologies. When any company is exploring a new space, they encounter problems that need to be solved.  In many cases, other companies…

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What Is Patent Infringement?

Many inventors and entrepreneurs believe that having a patent means they are “protected.” Having a patent just means you have a patent – whether someone infringes the patent (and you can actually enforce the patent) is a completely different question. The costs of patent enforcement are staggeringly high. Which is why there is patent insurance…

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Why patents in September are a bad thing

The USPTO issues more Office Actions in September than any other month. Why is that? The chart above shows the USPTO pendency of First Actions over the last two years. Notice that there is a huge difference in September for the last two years. What is this effect? Patent Examiners have production goals and bonuses.…

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How long does it take to get a patent?

It takes, on average, 2-4 years to get a patent from the United States Patent and Trademark Office. But, you can change the speed based on your filing strategy. The chart above shows how long a patent was pending for the patents that issued to Small Entities in the first quarter of 2021. The blue…

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Non-transitory storage media

If you have a patent claim with the term “non-transitory storage media” – you should find another patent attorney. The history of the “non-transitory storage media” claims. Who can you sue with a “non-transitory storage media” claim? Problems with the “non-transitory storage media” claims. What you can tell if your attorney uses “non-transitory storage media”…

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Types of Patents

What are the different types of patents? Patents have been the bedrock of innovation, powering the innovations of our early republic, through the Industrial Revolution and patents continue to play a big role in today’s technology improvements. Over 10,000,000 patents have been issued by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and over 400,000 are…

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How long do patents last?

Updated 19 July 2021. How long do US patents last? Different types of patents have different lifespans.  All of the answers below are for United States (US) patents. When most people think of patents, they are thinking of utility patents. There are other types of patents, such as design patents and plant patents. Some countries,…

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I’m A Recovering Patent Attorney

What is Really Wrong with the Patent System I am a “recovering patent attorney.”  I became a patent attorney after years as an engineer.  I went to a patent attorney and I expected my patent attorney to help me, but I was sorely disappointed.  I was so disappointed that I took the Patent Bar Exam,…

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Inhouse vs Outside Patent Counsel

There are Two Types of Lawyers There are two types of patent lawyers: outside counsel and inhouse counsel.  Each type of lawyer plays a completely different role, and the two types are at a constant battle with each other.  It is not to say that there is a war, but there are diametrically opposed interests…

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