Most people are aware that patent applications are lengthy and complicated, but if you are thinking about filing a patent application for your invention, you may be wondering just how long it actually takes to get a patent. Various sources, including the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), estimate the average time to obtain a patent to be from 21 to 25 months. We will break down the entire process for you so you know exactly what goes into obtaining a patent and how you can find a Santa Monica or Los Angeles patent law attorney who will expedite that process for you.
Searching the USPTO Database for Already Existing Patents
The first step to obtaining a patent is to search the patent database for already existing patents in order to ensure that the patent you want does not already exist. Depending on the volume of the search and the efficiency of the law firm you hire to perform the search for you, this step can take anywhere between one week to six months.
Drafting Your Patent Application
If your patent search turns up no results, that means you are in the clear and ready to begin your patent application. This step of the process can take a few days to a few weeks, depending on how clearly and efficiently you are able to communicate your invention to your attorney. In order to expedite this step of the process, make sure you have all your invention documents in order so that you can send them over to your attorney as soon as the patent search comes out clear. Once your attorney has all the necessary documents, it should not take more than a few days to draft your application. If you decide to draft the application on your own, just make sure to have a patent law attorney look it over for you before you submit it.
Filing Your Application and Waiting
There are two types of patent applications - provisional and nonprovisional. The former is a way to buy yourself extra time to develop your invention and conduct market research for up to one year while using the “patent pending” status, and the latter is the way to get your application into the queue to be reviewed by patent examiners. Either way, you will ultimately need to submit a nonprovisional patent application in order to have your patent application examined by an official employee of the USPTO. The average wait time for your nonprovisional application to be reviewed is 21 months.
Track One is an exception to the usual principal and only applies to plant and utility patents. There is a higher fee involved, as well, but you will receive a decision within one year of your filing. However, there are only 10,000 spots for Track One applications per fiscal year, so get your application in early.
Contact a Santa Monica or Los Angeles Patent Law Attorney Today
As you can see, the timing to obtain a patent varies depending on the type of invention you wish to patent, the complexity of your invention, and the skillfulness of your patent law attorney. The patent law attorneys at Verhagen Bennett have filed countless patent applications for their clients and obtained successful results. If you need your application expedited, just let us know and we will do our best to accommodate to your needs. Contact us today at 310-917-1064 or visit our website to find out how we can help you.
(image courtesy of Daniel McCullough)
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© 2018 Verhagen Bennett LLP — This article is for general information only. The information presented should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.