Patent Law in Saginaw, MI

Saginaw inventors should never risk their intellectual property because of mistakes made during the patent filing process. Patent law is a very particular section of the law. Therefore, you should seek the counsel of an experienced patent attorney in Saginaw to make sure you get the full credit you deserve.

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.

Those residing in Saginaw will most likely file tier patents with the Midwest Regional USPTO, which officially opened in 2012 in Detroit. This office was named in the America Invents Act, and was established to increase outreach for patent applicants. In addition to providing aid in regards to the patent process, this office offers classes in entrepreneurship. As well, it offers workshops that help connect inventors with those who may have capital to bring their invention to market.

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

Saginaw, MI 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 Saginaw MI

The process of applying for a patent in Saginaw, Michigan 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 Saginaw County Law Library is a tremendous resource for those conducting patent research. Remember, before filing your patent you must establish:

  • If your design or invention qualifies for patent protection
  • The type of patent necessary
  • If your design or invention has already been patented

In order to qualify for patent protection your invention cannot be obvious. The invention must also be novel, and qualify as useful to the public or populace in some manner.

When Should I Hire a Qualified Saginaw, Michigan Patent Lawyer?

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

Saginaw inventors can also conduct their patent research at the Michigan Law Library. Here, a copy of the Trademark and Copyright Journal is provided that can help Saginaw inventors. However, no one employed by the library is permitted to give you legal advice. Nor should they. Patent law is incredibly nuanced, and to navigate the process properly takes expertise. For this reason, you may want to consider seeking the counsel of an experienced patent attorney in Saginaw.

Work with an Experienced Local Patent Attorney in Saginaw, Michigan

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