Independent Inventors Meet With U.S.P.T.O. Director David Kappos

This morning (July 27, 2012) independent inventors gathered for a round-table discussion, and breakfast, with Patent Office director, David Kappos.  The event was organized by Patrick Raymond of the Inventor’s Association of Manhattan and hosted by Troutman Sanders LLP  who also provided a delightful breakfast.  Brian Fried of the Inventors and Entrepreneurs Club of Suffolk County led a contingent of Long Islanders into the city for the event.  The informal lecture and extensive question and answer session covered, U.S.P.T.O. resources for inventors, the America Invents Act, and patent law generally.  A special thanks to Director Kappos for spending some time with us. It meant a lot.  Here are some of the resources and suggestions Director Kappos had for the inventors of New York City and Long Island.

Track One Prioritized Examination:  If you need to move your ideas quickly, USPTO’s Track One prioritized examination will allow you to get a final disposition within about twelve months.  The USPTO offers Track One for prioritized examination of your utility and plant patent applications. Track One gives your application special status with fewer requirements than the current accelerated examination program and without having to perform a pre-examination search.

Provisional Patent Extensions:   A new Patent Office directive will effectively provide a 12-month extension to the existing 12-month provisional application period, providing applicants additional time to find financial help, evaluate a product’s worth in the marketplace or further develop the invention for commercialization.  This is achieved by a change to missing parts practice that will provide 12 additional months to perfect a non-provisional patent application.

Search Before You File: Director Kappos suggested to the room that it was a good idea to execute a thorough search before filing a patent application.  Where possible, he recommended employing a professional.  He also suggested some resources for DIY searching:

Director Kappos also filled us in on some speculation and future possibilities.  The U.S.P.T.O. has had a very successful Pro Bono program running in select test markets and it’s possible that this model will be coming to N.Y. in the near future.  A web-based user-fillable patent application form may also be finding its way to the U.S.P.T.O.’s website.  It is also possible that a “small claims patent court,” designed to make patent dispute resolution more accessible, is in the works.  Director Kappos pointed out that this idea would require legislation to become a reality.

All in all it was an educational and informative meeting with one of the world’s top IP professionals.  Thanks again to Director Kappos, the event organizers and everyone that attended!

Independent Inventors Learn from USPTO Chief

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