Patent Law in Albany, NY

As reported by HuffPost, innovators from New York have brought the world life-changing products. For instance, the Albany Time Union recently praised Seth Wheeler for his invention of perforated toilet paper.

No matter what you plan for your new concept, having a patent is critical to success. But, how do you mitigate your risks, costs, and time spent on this endeavor? You can start that discovery process in the sections below and learn how to evaluate your legal options.

What Is a Patent?

Patent law covers the many aspects of securing a patent. There are many legalities to understand, from copyrighting products and advertising, to the Lanham Act. Basically, a patent is a legal protection you secure through the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, (USPTO), under intellectual property laws. A patent guarantees the exclusive right to use your intellectual property. It also helps enforce that no other person can make or profit off of something for which you have a patent.

State and federal governments have a vested interest in helping citizens with the application process. For example, the New York Public Library offers Patent and Trademark Services. Furthermore, the USPTO headquarters is worth contacting for helpful resources.

What Are the Types of Patents?

There are three different types of patents inventors can apply for. Each patent has stipulations and serves a different purpose.

  • Utility Patent – This is the most common type of patent. It is for new machines, processes/functions, and chemicals.
  • Design Patent – These patents are for securing a unique and new design of a manufactured item. Design patents protect from entities trying to capitalize on an invention by replicating and producing it.
  • Plant Patent – These types of patents are specifically for the invention of new plant varieties. The process must include asexual reproduction, meaning by means other than seeds.

What Can You Patent?

In reality, not everything you create qualifies for patenting. There are only certain types of intellectual property that fall under patent protection. Other intellectual property rights cover different creations. Here is a look at the types of inventions you can patent.

  • Process – Also referred to as a method, this is a new way of doing something. 
  • Machine – This is any material thing or device that has some sort of output, whether functionality or physical object.
  • Manufacture – This is the creation of a physical object.
  • Composition of matter – This is a mixture of chemical or biological compounds to create something new.

You can apply for a patent for whichever new device, method, or compound you create by applying to the USPTO. Once they accept your patent application and approve it, you have exclusivity rights to the invention for the next 20 years. However, a design patent period lasts for 14 years.

Difference Between a Provisional and Non-Provisional Patent

Albany, NY inventors often file a provisional patent first, which is like a way of buying time to finalize an invention. Provisional patents last for a year, and the application process is simple. Once you file a provisional patent, you have exactly a year to convert it to a non-provisional patent. The latter is just another name for the formal and final patent.

How to Apply for a Patent in Albany NY

The process of applying for a patent in Albany, New York is complex and detailed. You must meet all the requirements and submit every required piece of documentation to secure your patent. You must file your application with the USPTO.

Furthermore, you will need to plan for the costs associated with the patent process. Accordingly, inventors in Albany should pay careful attention to the USPTO fee schedule. Depending on the nature of your invention, you could spend thousands to get it to the finish line.

It’s highly advisable to hire a patent attorney with that much capital and time at risk. With experience, they understand what examiners flag and how to avoid too much time going back and forth. In total, the steps that you must get through successfully with the USPTO include:

  • Researching patents
  • Application prep
  • Completing and sending documents
  • Responding to the examiner
  • Receiving and maintaining the patent

When Should I Hire a Qualified Albany, New York Patent Lawyer?

There are multiple reasons to hire a patent attorney. If you want the assurance of having someone acting on your behalf, then Albany patent law lawyers can help you. He or she can assist with every step of the filing process and ensure that you include all the required information. Additionally, they may be able to guide you when it comes to navigating consumer laws, as well as help you avoid false advertising. This can prove especially valuable if you are trying to merge, or transform your invention into a business.

You can also need a patent attorney in Albany to protect your invention from infringement. Under the current U.S. Code, anyone who knowingly profits from copying your idea is liable to civil actions. However, they may plan to lean on dubious loopholes in the law to continue their operations.

Since the legal system can move slowly, it’s critical to start civil actions as soon as possible. The infringer may know that they’re in the wrong, but they’re going to make as much profit as possible while they can. The only way to recuperate losses due to their activities is to have an experienced patent attorney by your side.

Work with an Experienced Local Patent Attorney in Albany, New York

A patent attorney provides a great service in assisting with securing and managing your patent. You should meet with a qualified Albany attorney to discuss how he or she can help you. We can even help you connect with an attorney across New York state lines.

Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an attorney in your area!

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