If you are in the process of a developing a new, innovative product, there will come a time when you need to address an important question – should you focus on marketing the new product or invest the time in filing for a provisional patent application? The answer is…it depends. For additional context, let’s look at some key features and distinctions between provisional patents and non-provisional patents.
Provisional patent filing was first offered by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in 1995 to provide U.S. inventors a simple, cost-effective option that established parity between U.S. and non-U.S. filers. In contrast to a non-provisional patent application, a provisional patent application does not issue as a patent. Nevertheless, it does provide the right to the inventor to file a subsequent non-provisional patent application that claims priority to the provisional patent application.
There are notable benefits to filing a provisional patent application. Here are just a few examples.
Patent Pending Status
One of the biggest benefits associated with a provisional patent application is that provides the inventor the option to indicate their product holds a “patent pending” status. Attaining the “patent pending” status provides an array of benefits, most notably an immediate advantage over other inventors and business owners looking to market a competing product. In addition, the “patent pending” status further discourages competitors from making and distributing similar products that could potentially infringe on your future potential patent.
This status lasts for one year commencing from the date of filing. After one year, the inventor has the option to file an application for a non-provisional patent and claim priority to the corresponding provisional patent application.
Less Resource Intensive
Provisional patent applications are generally less costly when compared to the expense associated with filing a proper non-provisional patent application. In addition, provisional patent applications involve less formalities and less drafting. In addition, a provisional patent application does not need to be examined by USPTO examiners.
Scope of Disclosure is Key
If you decide to file a provisional patent application, it is important to understand that the scope of the disclosure and drawings will likely play a large role at the time of its conversion to a non-provisional patent application. Why? Because the corresponding non-provisional application is unable to expand or claim more than what was described in the original provisional patent application.
As you can see, considering the various benefits associated with holding a provisional patent, it may be worthwhile for inventors to prioritize filing this type of application rather than focusing primarily on marketing your new product.
Contact Omni Legal Group to Schedule a No-Cost Consultation with an Experienced Patent Attorney in Los Angeles Today
If you are interested in filing a provisional or non-provisional patent application, the Omni Legal Group is here to help. Our team of patent attorneys in Los Angeles excel at protecting inventions using provisional and non-provisional patent app. Omni Legal Group is a premier Patent, Trademark, and Copyright law firm located in Los Angeles. For further information or to schedule a consultation please contact Omni Legal Group at 855.433.2226 or visit www.OmniLegalGroup.com to learn more.