General Information on Patents: Importance of Filing Applications Promptly

A patent application must be filed in accordance with the United States patent laws. One of the most critical requirements of our patent laws is that a patent application must be filed promptly. As of March 16, 2013, patents will be awarded to the first inventor to file a patent application for a particular invention. The patent laws of most foreign countries require that the inventor’s United States patent application must be filed before any steps are taken to make the invention available to the public through public use or publication. The failure to promptly file the application may result in the patent being held invalid.

In the United States, a one-year period is provided in which a United States application directed to a specific invention can be filed after that specific invention has been made available to the public through public use, publication, or placing the invention “on sale.” If you have any questions as to the relationship of your activities concerning the invention and these prompt filing requirements, you should bring them immediately to my attention, so that I can consider them and give you appropriate advice under the circumstances.

If you have any questions about any of these materials or how to proceed with obtaining patent protection, please contact me.

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