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By Gene Quinn August 11, How to write a patent application. Unfortunately, writing a patent application is not as easy as many think. Image Source: Deposit Photos. One of the most basic things any new patent attorney or patent agent needs to learn is how to draft a patent application. This skill is also one that can be extremely useful for inventors, particularly serious inventors who are likely to have more than one invention, as well as professional, corporate inventors who work for companies that pay them to invent.
While the latter category i. Writing a patent application is not as easy as many think. Indeed, the concept of usefully describing the invention , which on its face seems easy enough to understand, is not as straight forward as it might seem, and why you cannot simply file an abbreviate description of an invention and think that suffices to protect anything really.
When a patent application is filed a filing date is awarded, and priority is established with respect to whatever is appropriately described in the patent application at the time of filing. What follows are the most common parts of a patent application, together with discussion about what each section needs to include.
The title of the invention should be placed at the top of the first page of the specification, and it should be brief but technically accurate and descriptive. It should also contain fewer than characters. For applications filed on or after September 16, , the specific reference any prior applications one is claiming priority to must be included in an application data sheet Rule 1.
For applications filed prior to September 16, , the specific reference to the prior application may be in either an application data sheet Rule 1. Despite the fact that applications filed today no longer technically can claim priority by having cross-references in the patent application itself, this remains on the list of preferred parts of an application in the Manual of Patent Examining Procedures, and perhaps because it is how it has always been done many patent practitioners continue to do it this way still today.
If there is a governmental interest in the invention, a statement as to rights to inventions made under federally sponsored research and development is ordinarily included in the patent application.
The statement generally includes the name of the government agency and the contract number, if the invention was developed by or while under contract with an agency of the U. In fact, the biggest one may be actually following the USPTO recommendation of identifying and discussing the state of the prior art and including specific examples. That is not something an experienced patent practitioner would do because once you admit something is prior art it become prior art, period.
Teleflex in , it has become easier for patent examiners to reject claims as being obvious. Frankly, I think this is a mistake. Reference characters used in the drawings are referred to in the text, so the reader can look at the drawings and read the text to understand what the writer is discussing, much as would be the case with a well written instruction manual on how to put something together requiring assembly.
The description is a dictionary for the claims and should provide clear support for all terms used in the claims, with every feature specified in the claims illustrated. Unfortunately, there is not much useful one can say about claim drafting in a few paragraphs. We will also host a live, online patent claim drafting course for beginners beginning October 1, The abstract should not refer to purported merits or speculative applications of the invention and should not compare the invention with the prior art.
Where applicable, the abstract should include the following: 1 if a machine or apparatus, its organization and operation; 2 if an article, its method of making; 3 if a chemical compound, its identity and use; 4 if a mixture, its ingredients; 5 if a process, the steps.
Extensive mechanical and design details are unnecessary. It is written for attorneys and patent agents but is easily approachable for those new to the field. It is also an excellent tool for learning how to write a patent application. Gene founded IPWatchdog. He consults with attorneys facing peculiar procedural issues at the Patent Office, advises investors and executives on patent law changes and pending litigation matters, and works with start-up businesses throughout the United States and around the world, primarily dealing with software and computer related innovations.
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Tags: enablement , famous inventors , independent inventor , independent inventors , inventor , patent , patent application , patent application contents , Patent Drafting , Patent Drafting Basics , patents , provisional patent application , provisional patent applications , specification , written description , written description requirement Posted In: Inventors Information , IP News , IPWatchdog Articles , Patent Basics , Patent Drafting Basics , Patents.
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The abstract of your patent application is a short summary words or fewer that communicates the essence of your invention. Abstracts are useful mainly for searching patent databases. You should write your abstract so that those with a background in the field can easily understand it.
The person searching should quickly be able to get a sense of what your invention is so that they can decide whether they need to read the rest of the document. While the abstract describes your invention and says how it can be used, it does not discuss the scope of your claims.
Read it over a few times to get rid of words and jargon that you do not need. Try not to remove articles such as 'a','an' or 'the', since this can make the abstract hard to read.
Here are two examples of abstracts: one is from a patent for a collapsible tent frame and the other is from a patent for an electrical connector. Writing a patent application page 6 of 8 Previous Main Page Next Abstract The abstract of your patent application is a short summary words or fewer that communicates the essence of your invention. To write your abstract: Begin on a separate sheet of paper.
Remember the format requirements! Give the page a title such as "Abstract" or "Abstract of the description". Say what your invention is. Say what your invention is used for. Describe the main parts and how they work. Do not refer to any claims, drawings or other pieces of your application.
Since your abstract may be read on its own, the reader will not understand if you discuss other parts of your application. Previous Main Page Next.