How Can You Look up a Patent Number?

Look up a patent number on the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office website. If you know the patent number and need information such as the inventor’s name, description of the invention and patent title, use the USPTO Patent Full Text and Image database search engine. If you have a general description of the invention and need to locate the patent number, enter search terms in the search box in the top right corner of the main page.

To locate the Full Text and Image database search, go to, and click on Search for Patents under Patents on the left side of the page. To locate the complete bibliographical data of patents issued after 1976, click on Patent Number Search under Searching Full Text Patents, and enter the seven-digit patent number in the search box. To find the issue date, patent classification and a link to the full patent information of patents issued between 1790 and 1976, click on View Patent Full-Page Images under Searching PDF Image Patents.

If you need to find the patent number and other information on a patent application for a particular invention, use keywords to describe the invention in the search box on the main page. If your search yields no results, try synonyms of your search terms. Because patent search is sometimes complex, many searchers use experts at nationwide Patent and Trademark Resource Centers, which are listed on the USPTO website, to assist them.