How Do You Patent an Idea?


Quick Answer

To patent an idea, make sure it qualifies and have a suitable description of all its aspects. You may file a patent application online for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

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Full Answer

  1. Maintain accurate records

    Adequately describe every aspect of your idea. Use diagrams, a history of how the idea came about and building plans. Sign and date each entry, and include witnesses signatures as well.

  2. Research and assess your patent

    In order to gain a patent, you must detail how your idea is different from previous and similar inventions. Your idea must not be up for sale or known about before patent application. Make sure you research the market as well. The average patent costs around $1,500 in fees and professional write-ups. Perform a thorough patent search, through the Internet or the Patent and Trademark Depository Library, to make sure your idea qualifies and is unique.

  3. File a patent application

    File a provisional patent application first to claim patent pending status. This is especially helpful when your idea is in a highly competitive field. Finally, file and submit all the necessary information for a regular patent application, such as a summary of your idea, its claims and drawings, if applicable.

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