Patent Guide: II. CONCEPTION AND FIRST MEETING WITH ATTORNEY
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Conceiving of Your Technology to be Patented
What's your idea? What do you want to patent? If you have a concept, you can get a patent - even if you haven't made it yet. It might be better if you have for obvious reasons, but as you can reasonably make it work by hiring the right people to develop it, we're ready to get started. An inventor, according to the U.S. Patent Office, is someone who "conceives" of an invention. Actual use of a patent is not required.
What to Bring to Your First Meeting
At the first meeting, you need to communicate your idea to us in a way that we can best understand. We can just have a conversation, which is fine, but depending on what type of concept you have, it might help to bring any of a prototype, sketches, written description, or a combination of such things. We'll also add to this list - working model, flow charts, business plans, white papers, and wireframe mockups. Again, the goal is simply to best communicate the concept or patenable idea which is in your head, to our heads.
In this patent guide, we'll take you through our RFID bingo ball patent - think of it as EZ-Pass meets the game of bingo. The inventor, Mr. Erickson, brought us some actual bingo balls with transmitters inside along with a computer software program to read the correct number and print it on a lottery board on the screen of his laptop. You can bet that when we saw it and got to play with it, we had a good understanding of the concept.
How Our Firm Works
At our first meeting, we will get from you what you want to do - what do you want to protect? We will, in turn, respond with what is protectable. We'll discuss whether your concept falls within the scope of the type of things which are patentable, and if not, what we can do to get it there. We will discuss, if applicable, whether to go for a design patent or utility patent and so on.
We'll gladly talk to you over the phone and answer your general questions free of charge. Once we get to anything specific, such as making the above legal recommendations, we do ask to be compensated for our time. Further, lawyers take on liability so we'll need to create an attorney/client relationship so we charge a nominal fee for a formal consultation which we'll credit towards your patent application. We have a whole article on why attorneys charge consultation fees. This pays for our expertise, answering your legal quesitons, and making a determination as to whether your concept is patentable.
At this meeting, whether in New York, New Jersey,Pennsylvania, or via Skype (especially for international clients) we'll have that discussion about your technology. If your concept is something which we feel is potentially patentable (see: What is Patentable), we'll move on to, what will be shown on the next page: III. Novelty Searches and Written Patentability Opinions.