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Affordable Patents

Many inventors hesitate to embark on the journey of patenting their inventions, often deterred by the misconception that the patenting process is prohibitively expensive. While it’s true that obtaining a patent involves certain costs, the perception that it is unaffordable for most is a significant misunderstanding. In reality, there are numerous strategies and resources that can help make the process more budget-friendly. 

Economical Options for Patenting

  • Preliminary Self-Conducted Research

Preliminary self-conducted research primarily involves conducting a patentability search. This step is critical to determine if your invention is truly novel and non-obvious. The aim is to find any existing patents or publicly disclosed ideas that are similar to your invention. While you can hire a professional to conduct this search, it’s possible to do it yourself using public databases like those offered by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) or Google Patents. 

While searching these databases can be time-consuming and occasionally complex, the savings can be significant, and you’ll also gain a better understanding of your invention’s place in the broader market. It’s important to note that while self-conducted research is cost-effective, it may not be as comprehensive or legally sound as a search conducted by a patent professional.

  • Drafting Your Own Patent Application

Drafting a patent application is a skillful task that requires a clear understanding of patent law and the ability to describe your invention in precise legal and technical terms. Typically, this step is carried out by patent attorneys who have both legal and technical expertise. However, it’s possible to draft your patent application yourself. The USPTO website provides detailed instructions and resources that can guide you through the process. There are also numerous books and online resources that provide step-by-step instructions on drafting your application.

While this do-it-yourself approach can significantly reduce costs, it’s important to remember that any mistakes or omissions in your application can have serious consequences, potentially leading to a weak patent or even outright rejection of your application. If your invention has significant commercial potential, it may be worthwhile to invest in professional help at this stage. However, for simpler inventions or less critical applications, self-drafting can be a cost-effective option. If you decide to go this route, consider seeking professional advice for a final review before submission to ensure you haven’t missed anything crucial.

  • Micro Entity Status

Recognizing the financial challenges that smaller inventors might face, the USPTO provides a financial relief program in the form of micro entity status. To qualify as a micro entity, you must meet specific criteria, such as having a gross income less than three times the median household income in the U.S. in the previous year, and not being named as an inventor on more than four previously filed patent applications. Non-profit organizations and universities can also qualify for this status.

The primary benefit of qualifying as a micro entity is the significant reduction in many USPTO fees. In fact, micro entities are entitled to an 80% reduction on most fees, making this status highly advantageous for individual inventors or small entities. Applicants should be aware that the rules around micro entity status are complex, so it’s advisable to seek legal advice or thoroughly understand the USPTO guidelines before claiming micro entity status.

Bold Patents Can Offer Cost-Effective Options

Securing your innovative ideas with a patent need not be a road paved with exorbitant costs. With careful planning and strategic choices, the journey can be much more affordable. The attorneys at Bold Patents are committed to working closely with you, providing personalized and cost-effective patent assistance to safeguard your inventions. Please contact us to talk about affordable ways to obtain your patent and let’s turn your innovative ideas into protected assets without breaking the bank.