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- To: "'seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org'" <seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org>
- Subject: Patenting
- From: "Meyer, Jonathan" <JMeyer(--nospam--at)webbersmith.com>
- Date: Mon, 22 Jul 2002 14:01:33 -0400
I went through the process partially a number of years ago. Some of the important things I learned are:
- Do not discuss your idea with anyone (except your patent attorney). If the idea is in the public realm it will become unpatentable.
- Do not go to one of the companies that you see advertised on TV (or the internet). They are basically a rip off and will render your idea unpatentable (and cost you $ for nothing). The only assistance you will need is a patent attorney (see the phone book). This costs lots of $, but if your idea is good you will should be able to re-coup your costs, albeit many years later, once the idea is manufactured and selling.
- If you really want to keep your idea and make the most $ off of it, don't patent it. Set up manufacturing and corner the market. This will cost even more money than getting a patent, but all the profit will be yours.
- Don't submit your idea to a big corporation. They will steal your idea and never give you a dime unless you can prove they stole it (check out the story of intermittent windshield wipers and the big auto makers). This will cost big money and last many many years.
You can get information from the patent office on how to patent you ideas. I think the info is free. The first step is (or was when I went through the process) to file a disclosure document. This is a brief outline of your idea filed for a small fee (used to be $10) with the patent office. It registers you idea and provides a date of inception of your idea. It doesn't mean that the idea is patentable. It also gives you 2 years to develop your idea and apply for a full blown patent. Good luck. Oh - if you find any of the above information useful and you become the next Bill Gates, I would not refuse the gift of a house in the Caribbean (just to help with job burnout).
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