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By J.D. Houvener
Patent Attorney and Founder

Hey everybody welcome i am jd hoovener patent attorney and owner here at bold patton’s law firm and you’ve made it to our live broadcast we’re live on facebook linkedin and youtube it’s my pleasure to be here with you to answer live questions about the patent process maybe you’re just getting started you’ve got an idea maybe it’s a bold idea and you want to know what to do what’s that first step or maybe you’re all the way past getting a patent granted you’ve got the rights but you don’t know exactly what to do now you may have found an infringer anything in between there’s no question too simple here so please bring it on as i do want to let you know i am an attorney but this is not a legal consultation so please do not ask specific confidential legal issues here right keep things hypothetical ask your questions as if you’re bringing it up to a live you know public audience and just know this is uh you know not the time to have an attorney-client relationship if you do think that you’re ready to move forward and you want to consider hiring our firm to help you with your invention i will provide you a link here to do that and the best place to get started is to do a screening session you know much like you we want to make sure that you’re a good fit for us as much as we’re a good fit for you and so we found this screening session to be really valuable and so there’s a link for you if you’re interested in moving forward with that with us to have a session a 20-minute free phone call with one of our trained advisors to see if now is the right time okay so i’m excited to bring on our guest today he’ll be coming in just a minute uh his p his name is pete where’s bicky and he is a client of ours so it’s always fun to have clients come on that are brave enough to share what they’ve been working on and you’ll be pleased to see this is a refreshing topic right a way to stay cool uh in the summer as you can see from the sunlight coming in i’m getting a lot of sun over here our family actually just moved to moses lake washington which is right in the center of washington state quite a bit warmer out here a little more desert-like so we’re going to be getting plenty of sun so it’ll be fun having pete on to share his invention he’s calling it safe step so after that we’re going to jump to our obvo questions so if you’re listening and you’re coming from our avo community know that we do have um i’ll be getting to that after the uh the interview here with pete um so hang tight and please feel free to hang out and listen watch this if you’re watching after the fact and know that if you’re watching live i do see we have one live viewer uh hopefully we get some more i will prioritize live questions so if you have anything that’s on the top of your uh top of your mind don’t be afraid to put that a comment in there i will get back to you put it in order ahead of anybody else before we end this segment all right yeah thank you for that like and thumbs up if anybody else is coming in new you’re watching this maybe after the fact that this is your first time seeing a patent attorney in front of a live audience and you like that idea give me a thumbs up love to hear that the the feedback and share it with your social community as well we want to make this a growing thriving thing i know that we’re here every week every wednesday 9 a.m pacific noon on the east coast all right so all that said let me bring on our guest pete thanks for hanging out backstage how are you hi jd i’m doing great how are you i am excellent thank you so much i appreciate you coming on the show i’m excited to share and kind of hear about what you’ve been up to lately um so you’ve been working with one of our patent attorneys they need to sing on your on your patent application and you’re not quite at the end but before we get to talk about the patent could you share with us what safesip is all about so uh safe sip is the uh world’s first and only full flow one-handed auto closed drinking spout for commercial bottles uh it’s designed to work with water soda beer and wine and basically so i don’t have a prototype built yet just yet but to sort of give you a demonstration here if you could picture a typical industry standard drinking water bottle um so if you imagine if you were to pick this up with one hand and there’d be a little trigger or lever over here you could depress that with one finger it would open the valve and you’d be free to drink from your water or soda bottle uh full flow without any uh without it being an inhibited flow so if i were to say drop the bottle or knock it over it would not spill and the advantage to this is you know pretty obvious it could uh prevent damage to electronics paperwork uh to me one of the things that really excites me about safe sip is you don’t need two hands to open the bottle so say for example driving a vehicle you don’t need to take both hands off the wheel in order to to take a sip you could just reach down and pick up your bottle and and with one hand and one finger open the bottle and be able to drink freely awesome yeah i’m thinking of all sorts of reasons why you know it’d be nice to have one hand free you’re holding your kid crossing the street or whatever right walking the dog i mean you’re going to be less less encumbered so pete i wanted to actually show i did get from you some renders do you mind if i share that with everybody you can kind of tell me walk us through that okay let me share my screen and i got those pulled up here on our pdf hopefully they’re coming through okay so i’ve got this first one here do you want to start with this one or the others well sure we can start there so the uh um safe step is designed to come in two different embodiments uh you’re looking at the built-in embodiment where in it can be manufactured directly into a bottle say by coca-cola or aquafina where they would actually manufacture it right into their own bottles and in a disposable bottle so you can see the lever there that allows you to open the valve and and and uh um to be able to pour the bottle before the water switch to the next one redesigned there wouldn’t be an after model aftermarket add-on this would be built into their actual production box yeah i’m excited about the licensing possibilities here jd i’m thinking that you know uh uh that’s probably where the real money is at um you know if i could sign a deal with coca-cola or pepsi or one of the major water bottling companies where they would actually build this in and i could collect even a small royalty uh as from my research i have found that the uh the the world consumes 2 million i’m sorry 2 billion uh disposable bottles annually uh wow and if you could just uh get a fraction of that i would i would imagine that could uh be quite uh profitable so this is the second embodiment here and this is a universal uh attachment whereby it could attach to a water beer wine soda bottle um and this could be you know mass-marketed either online or through amazon or uh walmart um retail and um so in this embodiment it’s designed to to to snugly fit any existing commercial bottle and just simply attach it and and the little white square there in the front is the trigger you depress that and it opens the valve and and one of the other things that i didn’t mention earlier is that not only does it prevent spillage and distractions from using two hands but it’s also designed to uh prevent contamination and um also retain effervescence in in soda bottles right that’s cool that’s really cool so it attaches here and you separate from the top right it’s correct awesome let’s look at this last pick it’s oh it’s a little zoomed in here okay this is a sort of a locking mechanism yeah so i i i thought that it would be nice to be able to lock it so that you don’t accidentally press the trigger like if you uh let’s say you stick your bottle in your purse or um in a suitcase or something like that where you wouldn’t want it to spill and then on the left it’s uh the little um blue uh section there that bumps out that’s just intended to be like a a bell clip where you could attach it to your belt or a keychain or something like that uh in in this this rendering it actually looks quite large but it’s i think it’s a little bit misleading it’s it’s it’s i want it to be as small and compact as possible so that if you it’d be easy to carry around you keep one in your kitchen keep one in your car keep one in your office just have one available at all times whenever you you know expect to be buying a soda or a bottle of water right yeah and as you were saying i was taking a set from one of my other water bottles and so this is probably one of the most popular you know contigo style bottles but it requires it to have a separate bottle right absolutely and and i have yeah i have i have my contigo bottle here yeah right and and um you know the the like you said the drawback is you have to um uh provide your own bottle to carry that around could be quite cumbersome but uh also i mean i want to be able to just pull into a 7-eleven or a convenience store grab a bottle and and get on the road and say you know what i don’t want to spill this while i’m driving i don’t want to have an accident i want to just grab my my safe zip throw the cap away attach my safe zip and i’m good to go and so it’s designed to be obviously reusable uh dishwasher friendly you can put it in the refrigerator um so that uh you know it’s just a just a handy device that everybody should have around because i really do feel like uh um it’s so beneficial that that it’s almost a must-have if you drink a lot of bottled beverages for sure well thank you for sharing that awesome invention definitely a great way to stay cool in the summer um give us a little insight on uh you know where you’re at when in the patent process so um i’m hoping that we could be approved any day now um been working on this with with bold patents uh my attorney was uh bonita and i believe huda also assisted on the case and i’ve been real happy with both of them they uh um you know i did a little research on my examiner and i found out that you know they they they’re i guess they’re rated a little bit on uh differently on how they um how difficult they are to get a patent approved and i just happen to get one of the most difficult uh examiners and uh so i so i you know i really needed somebody that was going to understand my my uh my device and and my my concepts and and how it works and what i’m trying to achieve and um and and benita was great i mean she has an excellent understanding of what i’m trying to do and um so her replies with the examiner have been fantastic i mean she the examiner is doing anything he can to try to disqualify my patent and bonita has been um using uh previous cases as examples and and and because she has such a good grasp of how safe zip works um she’s able to uh uh come up with some really good responses and and and try to overcome some of the objections of the examiner so she’s been doing a great job wonderful it’s so great to hear thank you for sharing that um so pete what we’re going to do is we’re uh we’re going to hopefully get some questions coming in uh if you don’t i’ll put you backstage real briefly while i address three questions that did get submitted over the week and we’ll bring you back on to to close out all right thanks jd i’ll be here all right excellent and keep those questions coming i know sometimes there’s a one or two minute delay so if you don’t see your question being addressed just wait a couple minutes and please do keep sending those in all right so this first question here uh on submittal is about novel packaging method this would be kind of neat to look at and i’m going to look at this for the first time so i haven’t reviewed these yet all right let’s pull it up so can i patent my novel packaging method i want to package an everyday product in a unique way other products have been packaged similarly similarly before but not my everyday product can i patent my packaging method and if so uh if yes how cool okay well packaging methods uh are something that would be patent eligible okay like the order of operations and how you package it is probably still eligible right the series of steps the process that you go to follow that and also probably the utility or the actual packaging itself the way that it looks the structural integrity that it has may also be separately eligible so maybe two separate claims set depending on what it is that’s unique so if it’s what it ends up looking like right the actual form and function that ends up you know has having it at the end if it provides you know additional you know transparency to see the product while also having structural stability um then that’s a utility if what it looks like or the actual or you know ornamentation the the form and the the feel the way that it appears could be protected under a design pattern so there’s a lot of different things to think about when it comes to packaging now for the most part you’re going to want to think carefully about is it worth the investment right so patenting is definitely something that’s not you know low on the cost or the investment side and you want to make sure there’s a sizable market for the actual packaging itself and so typically you’ll want to think of products that are sold a lot right that have a mass quantity or have a large sale base and so if you’ve done some initial market research and can confirm that whatever it is that’s inside that package is going to be you know moved through in a large quantity i think the market makes sense and so the next question the last question that sort of remains in that in this series is is it patentable okay so is the packaging the first of its kind in the whole world right does it actually have non-obviousness to it is it so similar to a previous package that it’s only going to have you know marginal differences and those differences is what you’ll actually get the patent on so is a customer willing to pay more for those differences and sometimes yes right sometimes those like improvements right you think about the you know the new upgrades and automobiles or the latest gadget uh the bell and whistle that you’re adding on might actually move the needle in terms of what customers are willing to pay for a lot of those things will play into it but in terms of eligibility you bet packaging can be patented it’s eligible you just want to be careful about the market size the opportunity and indeed what the scope of rights is so i encourage you to speak with a patent attorney and of course our firm would be happy to work with you to discuss patentability and what the scope of rights looking like so thank you that question out of dallas all right next question here is out of wichita kansas and this one is about a product with the bottom piece and asking about a design pad so let’s see if this comes through here

all right this will probably cover most of the screen it’s a long question i have a product that can have a bottom piece or not and if i get a design pattern can i cover both designs okay so there’s sort of a multiple embodiments here i have a product for instance a cup shape the product is functional with or without the bottom i’d like to include the bottom piece but if i get a design patent could someone copy the idea and just take out the bottom piece um what are my options should i get two patents or one pad okay so a couple things to think about here firstly i want to mention about design patents okay design patents cover just the shape of one specific design and in general design patents are more narrow much more now than utility patents utility patents protect the functionality right what the invention does and in your case a cup right it’s going to hold a liquid or a solid or some sort of a product or you know quantity of of whatever it is it’s holding and you know the the proportions the the structure the the shape of the actual cup maybe a handle other base structure or any other materials that add to the to the benefit make it lighter weight right those are all the utility functional benefits of that cup and whether it has a bottom or not is certainly something that plays into that utility and so what’s nice about utility patents okay if you can get one right if you can demonstrate that the functionality the structure is new then you can get many different embodiments covered under one claim set right what you end up owning with the with the utility is usually a numbered set one to 20 written english word claims and that can have a lot of different versions right you can have a cup with a handle in the top and the sides and you not necessarily don’t necessarily need to mention that it has a base right because you like to have the option of having bulk and then only in the dependent claim would you decide to put a base on one of them which would allow you to have price and protection over anyone that tries to sell that cup with or without the base okay now going back to design patents if all you have is the if you believe all that is novel is the way that the cup looks you don’t think there’s much having to do with utility that’s really new or functional um then you’re in a way you still have an option okay so with design patterns there are two types of lines if you look carefully at a design pattern some lines are solid line right solid black line the way the drawings are shown and some are in dashed or you know hashed lines and so the hash lines are areas of the design that are not being claimed meaning they’re they’re left ambiguous and in a way that’s one way a very careful you know patent attorney that’s working with the drafter can actually get broad right so for you if you if it worked out perfectly after connecting a search we could confirm that the features of the cup were unique and we could still keep that base uh generic we would put that base in dashed lines and allow the design to be basically bottomless okay where you would have control over and protection on everything but the base so you could you could change that base it could be star-shaped it could be oval it could be you know hollow all those options you would have protections on as long as they were still infringing that base core outer shape everything but the base so that’s a little bit complicated hopefully you’re able to follow along with me there if you have additional questions i encourage you to reach out directly to me i’ve got my email address and a text only phone number i’ll provide here right now okay last question on avo again this is on the patent application category this one is from cedar rapids iowa this came in four days ago

all right

okay so i filed a non-provisional patent application a week ago how do i make an update to it i realized a minor mistake was made are there ways to make an update to it uh do i want do i want for an unrelated office action okay let’s feel it

i don’t have such action to make my update or are there other ways to make updates sooner yes there are ways to file a correction um you know and it’s been a while since i personally have done the actual filing um there’s a couple different ways to modify an application the [Music] for the most part as long as you are not adding new matter and this is the big important one long as you’re not saying oh i forgot about this you know major structural or improvement or you know major part of the functionality uh that wasn’t disclosed in the in the original spec as filed spec then you’re probably going to be okay if you’re adding just more detail to what was already discussed when you initially filed this back you’ll probably be just fine but if you really did forget a major functional structure or something you know that wasn’t discussed at all in the original submittal you might lose that initial filing date you might need to submit a new specification so let’s say you filed it you know this for purposes of let’s say june 1st 2021 um and what you forgot to add would constitute new matter meaning it really was a big thing that you forgot and you submitted it today you would have a new priority date of june 23rd so you’d run the very small risk of and another inventor somewhere else in the world or here in the united states filing on that same unique invention between june 1st and june 23rd so that would be sort of the risk and the the issue there so hopefully you can get through that profiling on your own there’s a lot of great resources on the website and of course um both patents will be happy to help you with with providing that additional supplement spec and making sure that what was filed was filed properly on top of that so again please reach out um schedule a screening session if you’d like to to talk with one of our attorneys all right well that was the three questions i’ll bring uh pete back on p do you have anything to add or any follow-up questions to some of those that we just answered uh no jd i wanted to say thank you for real for having me on and and giving me the opportunity to talk about my invention safe sip and uh it’s always a pleasure speaking with you and once again uh thank you for all that you’ve done to help me get my invention uh approved and i look forward to maybe this week or next week getting the actual uh approval and i’m pretty excited about that right on right now well thank you for joining again take care pete have a good day all right thank you jd take care bye-bye all right bye-bye and thank you for our audience here uh and again we’re here every week every wednesday 9 a.m pacific at noon on the east coast i’m jd hoovener owner and managing partner at bold patton’s law firm have a good day everybody go big go bold

About the Author
J.D. Houvener is a Registered USPTO Patent Attorney who has a strong interest in helping entrepreneurs and businesses thrive. J.D. leverages his technical background in engineering and experience in the aerospace industry to provide businesses with a unique perspective on their patent needs. He works with clients who are serious about investing in their intellectual assets and provides counsel on how to capitalize their patents in the market. If you have any questions regarding this article or patents in general, consider contacting J.D. at