Inventors continue to invent new tools that can help us to live comfortably. They continue to research and create objects that can be useful for the masses. Aside from physical objects, coding algorithms and GMOs can also be considered inventions.
But who helps these inventors? How can they protect their work?
Patents and the Patent Law
The government helps inventors and scientists by granting them a license. It is a right granted to these people that protects them in case a third party steals, sells, and uses their patents.
Traditionally, patents were only given to tangible creations, including car parts, computer accessories, machines, and coils, and the like. As time passed by, the law became broader. The law also protects intangible properties such as codes, algorithms, business practices, and organisms.
To get your product patent, you have to file an application. When approved by the US Patent and Trademark Office, your patent is valid for 20 years.
For the duration of your patent’s validity, no one is allowed to use and market your inventions aside from you. If someone does, you can get the help of a patent law firm. Your work is protected under federal law, and you can bring the case to court.
A patent lawyer is unlike any other lawyer. Since your work is under federal law, you can’t find a patent lawyer locally. Every patent lawyer in the US can practice their expertise nationally. But first, they have to pass the Patent Bar Exam given by the USPTO.
Patent lawyers generally have a degree in engineering or science. The bar exam is also extra tough since the passing rate ranges at 28% to 40%. It’s lower than most bar exams.
That said, they might be the rarest type of lawyers there are. There has been no increase in the population of patent attorneys compared to other sectors. There are less than 2% of lawyers who specialize in patent law.
That said, you can’t just reach out to a local law firm or lawyers you know. If you need help with your patent, you have to contact a patent law firm regardless of their location.
Do Patent Lawyers Help Individuals?
Most patent lawyers help large corporations and companies. They either work with them or serve as an in-house counsel. While they make up the meager population of patent lawyers, they don’t usually help individuals.
Usually, it’s because they don’t have the right business experience.But there are a few attorneys who specialize in helping small businesses, start-up companies, and even individual investors.
Patent lawyers are already rare. Finding those that are passionate in helping small businesses and individuals are even rarer. But that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. You have to conduct some research and find the right contact.
And don’t worry about the distance. Communicating with them is much easier and cheaper through technology. All you need is to communicate with them to start the process.