Patent Law & Patent Protection
A patent is a government grant of a right of exclusion, the right of a patent holder to exclude others from making, using or selling methods and products falling within the scope of the patent claims. While the principles are generally consistent, patent law and procedure is widely recognized as a highly complex body of law, the details of which vary considerably from one jurisdiction or country, to another. Clients are well advised to seek out the advice of licensed professionals such as Maine Cernota & Rardin, to represent them in matters pertaining to the drafting, filing, and prosecution of patent applications in the United States and, through their global affiliate agents and firms, in other countries around the world.
In the United States, a design or utility patent may be available for an invention that is new, useful and non-obvious in accordance with U.S. patent law. Design patents are limited in scope to protecting only the ornamental and non-functional aspects of an article of manufacture, and are analogous in some respects to trademarks in that they rely on being distinguishable by users from other related or similar articles of manufacture. Utility patents, in contrast, are intended to define and protect the claimed structure or process of the invention. In exchange for these rights of exclusion granted to the patent holder, the invention is disclosed to the world by publication of the patent so that others may learn from the invention and build on that knowledge.
A U.S. utility patent begins with an invention. The invention is presumably a trade secret until the inventor or his or her employer elects to disclose the invention publicly and/or attempt to patent the invention and create an exclusive right under federal law to make, use, sell or import the invention. TheIPTeam.com at Maine Cernota & Rardin is highly experienced with invention capture and initial evaluation, and with the drafting and prosecution of U.S. design and utility patents with the United States Patent Office. These services extend to the filing and prosecution of patent applications in other jurisdictions and countries using our global network of highly skilled patent practitioners and firms.
The attorneys at Maine Cernota & Rardin appreciate the sophistication of our clients’ technologies and the business challenges they face, and the diversity and complexity of their respective industries. Their different aptitudes, educational backgrounds, pre-law work history and personal skills and experiences enables them as a team to address a wide range of electrical, chemical, and mechanical arts. Representative technologies include communication systems and protocols, hybrid circuitry, power systems, integrated circuits, transducers, computer-implemented applications, quantum well devices, supercritical fluids, polymer compounds, textiles, large and small manual and computer based tools, medical devices and related gadgetry.