Hiring any patent attorney that is familiar with the stack of paperwork associated with filing a patent application (or various patent applications for that matter) may save inventors from waiting longer than necessary for a design patent. This is greatly beneficial, as it gives fellow inventors less of an opportunity to think about copying an idea, and also puts the spotlight on the original creator by filing any patent applications first for the United States and Trademark Office.
Inventors may have more success with patent attorneys' help
Patent applications can easily be 30 pages long. This is because a number of detailed questions are asked in an effort to determine if a design patent should be issued. Even if an inventor has his or her application approved, diagrams and a prototype and explanation of the invention must be submitted.
If a board rejects an inventor after their application has been approved, patent attorneys can assist in asking for reconsideration following the board's initial decision. Changes can then be made before re-submitting for a second time. However, if the panel rejects changes a second time, a design patent is considered dead and not active. While it may seem that the process to receiving any design patent is straightforward and simple, there can always be unexpected complications. This is just part of the reason an inventor should hire patent attorneys.
Approved patent applications or a design patent doesn't last indefinitely
When an inventor receives a design patent, the patent approval is only in effect for a certain number of years. After then, an extension must be requested before a patent expires, or the idea may be declared common knowledge. This unfortunately may open the door for competitors to copy the product and release their own versions. This also means an inventor will no longer receive a royalty off his idea.
Though patent application processes are long and grueling, the reward of a design patent may make it worth the extra time and money. The patent keeps the inventor's designs from being copied for a period of at least five years, so as long as the patent obtained is not provisional. A provisional patent is one that is awarded under certain circumstances.
For many inventors, their work isn’t about the money. It is simply the act of designing a product which people need. Their reward is simply holding the very first product off the production line and best of all, no one gets the credit for their idea but them.