The patent protection on an invention is obtained by preparing and filing an application with the Patent Office (PTO). Under the current law, a regular (non-provisional) or provisional application can be filed.
A regular application includes specification and claims. The specification comprises a detailed disclosure of the invention idea, including drawings illustrating the invention, a teaching of how to make and use the invention, and “best mode” for carrying out the invention. A regular application is examined by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for issuance of a patent.
A provisional application includes specification, is kept pending for only 1-year, and –
- must be converted to a regular application before the end of the 1-year period
- is not examined and does not result into a patent
- cannot be filed for design inventions
- but allows “Patent Pending” status, during its pendency
Once determined to be complete by the PTO, a regular patent application is assigned to an Examiner who reviews the application for compliance under the law. The Examiner conducts a search of prior art to determine whether or not a patent should be granted on one or more claims. The search locates already-issued U.S. or foreign patents, foreign patent publications, literature articles, scientific publications, statutory invention registrations, defensive publications, etc.
The Examiner reviews the uncovered prior art to determine the aspects of claimed invention already in public domain and determines patentability of the invention under the law as described in https://www.econotimes.com/How-You-Can-Benefit-from-Turning-to-the-InventHelp-Experts-1577312 article.