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Things to Look for in a Patent Attorney

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When Apple began using the word "lightning" in connection with the USB connection for the Iphone 5 and Ipad 3 docking ports, they unknowingly violated patent law. For some time, Harley-Davidson trademarked the word "lightning" in Europe. Many different products were included in this classification.

Harley Davidson agreed to allow Apple to use the word in Europe in 2012. The details surrounding the case have not been released for public consumption.

Patent lawsuits have grown at a rate of almost 3,000 per year. This is the biggest increase in 20 years where lawsuits ranged about 500 per year. The purpose of a patent or trademark is to establish a mark letting consumers know the source of the goods they are purchasing. Under patent law, trademarks under certain classifications cannot be used in association with certain goods. Businesses both large and small recognize this opportunity and have increased demand for patents at an exponential rate. In 2013, 2.6 million patent applications were filed worldwide. This was a 9% increase from the previous year. More specifically, the United States processed 520,000 patent applications from 1998 to 2010.

For companies that have copyright concerns regarding the introduction of their new product, it is important to consult patent law specialists first. Having even a basic understanding of patent and trademark law could save an organization thousands in the event of a patent lawsuit. Minneapolis patent law firms have a history of handling patent law cases of all kinds with proven success.

When dealing with intellectual property law and choosing a patent lawyer, there are some things a business must consider:

  • Keep in mind that your attorney was hired by you. Therefore, they work for you
    Establish your expectations for each other before you begin working together. Come to an agreement on compensation that both parties can be comfortable with.
  • Document everything
    Once you have agreed on terms and compensation, get everything in writing. Compare bills and all other documents you receive to confirm you are being charged fairly.
  • Understand the difference between large firms and independent practitioners
    Large firms usually have the ability to handle a wide range of intellectual property. They also include patent lawyers with years of experience in the field. Independent patent lawyers are more affordable and, on average, work directly with clients.

Apple may have reached an agreement with Harley-Davidson, but not all lawsuits involving patent law have a positive outcome. Educate your company on the benefits of hiring patent law firms and secure your future.

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