Q:

Which websites offer a free patent search?

A:

Quick Answer

A number of websites offer a free patent search tool, including Free Patents Online (freepatentsonline.com) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (uspto.gov). Free patent searches are a good way for inventors to conduct preliminary investigations into whether patents have been filed or granted on ideas or inventions similar to their own.

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Full Answer

The United States Patent and Trademark Office allows users to access full-text​ U.S. patents issued from 1976 onward. It provides PDF images of U.S. patents issued from 1790 onward. Users can choose between a quick search, advanced search or a search based on a patent number. It is also possible to conduct searches on international patents from this website.

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