Patent Law in Sacramento, CA
Residents of Sacramento should always be willing to go the extra mile to protect their inventions and intellectual property. While you never want to end up as a cautionary tale, there are bad actors who seek to take advantage of those who are unfamiliar with the patent process. This is where an experienced Sacramento patent attorney can help you.
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.
Sacramento designers and inventors looking to protect their intellectual property through a patent will most likely file their application with the USPTO Silicon Valley Regional Office. However, there are resources located in Sacramento that can help inventors. These include classes on how to bring your invention to market. Remember, it is always a gamble to bring your invention to market before you have the full protection of a patent.
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
Sacramento, CA 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 Sacramento CA
The process of applying for a patent in Sacramento, California 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.
The Sacramento Law Library, in addition to the California State Law Library, provides research resources for inventors in the area. However, no member of the staff is able to provide you with legal counsel or assist you in filling out your patent application. For this you must go to an experienced patent attorney in Sacramento.
When looking to file a patent for an invention you should keep a written record of everything you do. Ideally, you should record every step of the process. You could also keep a video record if that is more to your sensibilities. Make sure that your invention qualifies for a patent, and make sure that a patent doesn’t already exist. Once you’ve done your research, you should approach an experienced patent attorney in Sacramento to help you through this process of filing, and filing correctly.
When Should I Hire a Qualified Sacramento, California Patent Lawyer?
There are multiple reasons to hire a patent attorney. If you want the assurance of having someone acting on your behalf, then Sacramento 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.
The California Secretary of State maintains the patent applications filed, as well as maintains the current trademark database. You can choose to go it alone when it comes to protecting your inventions and property, but the best course of action may be to avail yourself of the expertise of an experienced Sacramento patent attorney.
Sacramento Inno reports that Rhombus Systems has been hit with a patent infringement lawsuit. Rhombus is a corporation that manufactures cameras and security systems that can be viewed by apps on computers and smartphones. The lawsuit, filed by Rothschild Broadcast Distribution Systems, alleges that Rhombus is infringing upon patented technology in their cloud based surveillance systems. It is not uncommon for a large corporation to take liberties with the patent rights of inventors, if they can. This is where an experienced patent attorney in Los Angeles could prove invaluable.
Work with an Experienced Local Patent Attorney in Sacramento, California
A patent attorney provides a great service in assisting with securing and managing your patent. You should meet with a qualified Sacramento attorney to discuss how he or she can help you. We can even help you connect with an attorney across California state lines.
Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an attorney in your area!