Patenting in the USA

Patenting in the United States is the process of obtaining the right to use an invention or design exclusively for a certain period of time. This allows the patent holder to control how and who can use his invention and, in some cases, to get profit from its commercialization. The U.S. has a very well-established system for enforcing the termination of rights infringement. We advise entrepreneurs to make sure that their design or functional features do not infringe on the rights of third parties before launching new products on marketplaces.

The main stages of the USA  patenting process

Before starting the process of patenting or bringing a product to market, it is important to conduct research (patent search) to make sure that your product or invention is unique and has no analogues in existing patents.

There are three main types of patents in the United States:

  • an invention patent that protects the functional features of an object and is valid for 20 years;

  • a design patent that protects the visual features of an object and is valid for 15 years;

  • a patent for plants.

This includes creating a detailed description of the invention, including its construction, functions and methods of use. It is important to clearly and accurately describe all the features of the invention and, most importantly, its advantages over the existing state of the art.

The application can be filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO through online system. There is an option to file a provisional application, which can be written in any form, taking into account the fact that within 12 months it will be necessary to file a regular application based on such provisional application.

After filing an application, the process of its review begins. This can take a considerable amount of time (sometimes several years).

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) may issue requests to clarify a submitted application and/or provide clear and complete responses to such requests.
 
We encourage you to consider these requests carefully and provide complete responses.
 
If necessary, our company can help in preparing answers.

If the application meets the requirements of the law, a decision will be made to grant a patent.

This is a general overview of the US patenting process. However, it is worth remembering that the requirements may vary depending on the type of patent and specific circumstances. If you have specific questions about patenting in the United States, our team of specialists will answer them.

Maintenance of Patents

After obtaining a patent, it is necessary to pay fees for maintaining its validity yearly - annuities.

The patent term for an invention is 20 years, and for a design - 15 years. U.S. law provides for the possibility of extending the term of a patent. For example, if the patent office took a long time to process the application and such a delay caused financial losses due to the inability to exercise its rights.

Cost of patenting in the USA

The cost of patenting depends on many factors, including the status of the applicant (micro-enterprise, small enterprise or standard enterprise). In addition, there are additional costs for search, examination and registration. You will be considered a small business if you are a non-profit organization or have up to 500 employees. You can acquire the status of a micro-enterprise if you have been named as an inventor in no more than 4 patent applications and your annual income does not exceed three times the average family income for the previous year (approximately no more than $200,000).

Service

Fee,USD
(equivalent in UAH)

Standard

enterprise

Small

enterprise

Micro

enterprise

Application fee:

– preliminary

300

120

60

– invention patent

320

128

64

– design or plant variety patent

220

88

44

In addition:

– for each independent item more than 3

480

192

96

– for each item over 20

100

40

20

– for an application with several independent items

860

344

172

– for every 50 pages in the application more than 100 pages

420

168

84

Searching:

– invention patent

700

280

140

– design patent

160

64

32

– plant variety patent

440

176

88

Examination:

– invention patent  / applications under the international procedure

800

320

160

– design patent

640

256

128

– plant variety patent

660

264

132

Registration and issuance:

– invention patent

1200

480

240

– design patent

740

296

148

– plant variety patent

840

336

168

After obtaining a patent, the owner must pay fees to maintain its validity. If this is not done, the patent will expire. Unlike other countries, including Ukraine, fees are paid not annually, but three times during the term of the patent:

Support period after date of issue of the patent

Fee,USD
(equivalent in UAH)

Standard

enterprise

Small

enterprise

Micro

enterprise

3,5 years

2000

800

400

7,5 years

3760

1504

752

11,5 years

7700

3080

1540