Patent Law in Lexington, KY

The North Kentucky Tribune documents brilliant inventors to come from the area. For example, Frederick Jones patented a breakthrough in mobile refrigeration in 1942.

This innovation changed how we think about the delivery process for perishables like meat and other produce. If you have a revolutionary new concept in Lexington, obtaining a patent can create a new enterprise and legacy.

The application process, maintenance, and stopping infringement often make it wise to hire a patent attorney. Find out how the right legal counsel can help turn your goals into accomplishments below.

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.

If you have a few questions about the process, you may want to contact the Midwest Regional USPTO Office. As for research, Lexington inventors should find a Patent and Trademark Resource Center.

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

Lexington, KY 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 Lexington KY

The process of applying for a patent in Lexington, Kentucky 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.

Inventors face an eight-step process to get and maintain their intellectual property. The prep work may take Lexington residents months or years to complete. Additionally, current data from the federal government suggests a 19-month wait for the first office action. In total, many find they will spend 2 – 3 years getting their invention to the finish line.

At a more detailed level, you can benefit from a patent attorney’s experience with steps like:

  • Researching patent databases for similar concepts to ensure patentability
  • Choosing the most effective strategy
  • Creating a thoroughly researched and completed application
  • Answering feedback from an examiner in a satisfactory manner
  • Planning next steps for paying maintenance or applying for non-provisional protection

When Should I Hire a Qualified Lexington, Kentucky Patent Lawyer?

There are multiple reasons to hire a patent attorney. If you want the assurance of having someone acting on your behalf, then Lexington 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.

Publications like Entrepreneur Magazine recognize that applications can be difficult without an attorney. This fact is particularly true regarding rejections by examiners or the appeals process. Responding properly in either circumstance is critical. Furthermore, they can be uphill battles without familiarity with the experience.

An additional concern for many is protecting their intellectual property from infringers. The effort required to police the marketplace may involve more time and effort than you have to give.

Work with an Experienced Local Patent Attorney in Lexington, Kentucky

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