A patent refers to a legal declaration of exclusive ownership rights to an invention or innovation. Patents safeguard concepts or ideas. Protecting your ideas or concepts turned into inventions or innovations through patenting is vital. Business companies and firms should set themselves apart from their competitors in the industry based on their patent portfolios to attain and maintain dominance. Kindly note that your competitor in the market can’t manufacture, distribute, use, sell, or import your invention or innovation outside the country or countries wherein you have secured your Patent Rights without seeking your permission.
While patent prosecution, right from filing a Patent Application to having it granted, is lengthy and complicated, one must remember the significance of obtaining Patent Protection. With so many virtual advancements, the entire system shall undoubtedly get easier and simplified in the times to come.
Why should you protect your ideas turned into inventions with a patent? Here’s the answer:
- It ensures nobody claims ownership of your invention or innovation.
- If there is an infringement or violation of your patented invention, you can seek help from legal authorities and enforce your patent rights.
- It offers the freedom of exclusivity and makes it convenient to construct and commercialize a product.
- It helps acquire a significant and higher market share considering that your concept or idea turns into a brand and brings better income margins.
Let us now explore the top 05 quick and crisp tips to safeguard an innovation through patenting.
1. Understand if Your Idea or Concept is Eligible to Obtain Patent Protection
To safeguard your idea or concept turned into innovation through patenting, you must ensure that it meets the three essential conditions:
- Novelty & Originality – Implies that your invention or innovation must not have been made public before the date of filing the patent application.
- Inventive Step – Implies that your product or process must involve an innovative solution.
- Industrial Applicability – Implies that it must be possible to manufacture the new invention or innovation.
The invention or innovation must exhibit a novel function unknown within the frame of modern literature. It needs to be such that an individual with day-to-day competencies in the applicable subject field should not possess the ability to deduce it obviously or easily. However, while submitting the patent application to the concerned Patent Office or authority, its owner must describe it in sufficient detail so that any person possessing simple skill sets in the comparable subject field could replicate it. Additionally, the patent has to exhibit commercial applicability.
2. Perform an In-Depth Patent Search before Submitting Your Patent Application
If you have a novel idea or concept, you must ensure that the corresponding innovation has never been predicted by publication in any form before submitting your patent application. To confirm the same, you must perform an in-depth Patent Search.
- You must perform a patent search via credible databases.
- You must conduct a thorough patent search using different keywords, phrases, inventor names, etc., on Google.
- You may consider seeking help from useful patent resources.
- You may also carry out research inside magazine articles on your own.
3. Keep All Data Secure & Make a Feasible Prototype
To safeguard your idea or concept through patenting, you require reporting the existence of your invention or innovation at the earliest point possible. Every other inventor could be working on a comparable product at the same time as you; therefore, you need to reveal the chronology of your invention or innovation to prove that you aren’t copying anyone else.
Voice memos, dated journals, videos, photographs, and sketches can memorialize your invention process. Moreover, digital documents with timestamps, in particular, can assist you in setting up a patent claim for your invention.
The patent offices and concerned authorities require an in-depth description of your invention or innovation. There is no better way to do the same than to make a prototype of your innovation, along with a cleanly written description of how it works.
4. Have Signed Confidentiality Contracts, NDAs, & Patent Agreements in Place
Before getting in touch with a Patent Attorney to safeguard your invention or innovation, you shouldn’t release any records concerning the product or innovation, considering that public disclosure triggers diverse legal guidelines, as a result of which the patent rights may be irrevocably lost. Additionally, you must have all the written documentation in place, signed with the help of a witness, of every step that went into making your invention or innovation to prove that you are the inventor. If you own a company and any of your employees are likely to be the inventors, you must have them sign agreements well in advance concerning that all the rights belong to the company.
5. Prepare Well for Provisional & International Patent Applications
You can consider filing a provisional patent application to safeguard your invention or innovation fast without spending much money. A provisional patent safeguards your rights for one year until you gather the material and economic assets required to document and file a non-provisional patent application.
Inventions or innovations included with a provisional patent are classified as ‘patent pending.’ It implies that the duration in which a product is not a fully patented invention, its inventor’s rights still hold through the aid of the patent infringement law.
Many countries honor each others’ patents as a provision of exchange agreements. However, you may want a global patent to safeguard yourself and your rights completely.