(Virtually) Every thing Startups Must Know About Patents | by DC Palter | Sep, 2023

A patent primer for startup founders

Entrepreneur's Handbook
Congrats on Being Issued a Patent! Picture from Wikipedia.

Final week, I wrote about why patents present no short-term advantages for startups however are nonetheless completely crucial to construct a aggressive moat. At the moment, I dive into the small print founders have to learn about acquiring patents.

As a result of I don’t know a lot concerning the non-U.S. and each nation is considerably distinctive, I’m limiting this text to discussing U.S. patents. My apologies to startup founders outdoors the U.S.

There are 3 distinct patent varieties:

  • Utility patent: When folks within the tech business consider patents, they’re typically pondering of utility patents. These are granted for any new or improved course of, machine, article of manufacture, or composition of matter. For many tech startups, these are the one patents that matter.
  • Design patent: These are patents for decorative designs of manufactured gadgets. Not like a utility patent, which protects how an merchandise works, a design patent protects the way it seems. Except your startup makes footwear or distinctive client items the place look is crucial to branding, design patents are typically ineffective for startups.
  • Plant patents: These are patents for brand new kinds of vegetation. Plant patents are crucial if you happen to’re breeding new kinds of apples. They’ve some purposes in AgTech however are in any other case irrelevant to startups.

Patent Interval:

A patent supplies a 20-year interval of exclusivity on the usage of the expertise from the date of submitting (not the date of issuance) aside from design patents, that are for 15 years. Nonetheless, ongoing upkeep charges should be paid in the course of the interval, or the patent shall be deserted.

Submitting Deadlines:

Within the first-to-file system, the date of the patent submitting is crucial.

  • A patent software for the expertise, both a daily or provisional software, should be filed earlier than anyone else’s software, or they get the patent, not you.
  • The patent software should be filed earlier than anyone else releases public…

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