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You may not think anything of the things you wanted to invent as a child, but as the world progresses, some of those things might have a chance at becoming a reality. No matter the idea, if you want to make it a reality, there are a few things you need to do first. The most important, aside from actually turning your concept into a physical reality, is to secure it as your own intellectual property. To do that, you need to acquire a patent. Here's a short guide to get you started on your patent education.

Decide what kind of patent you need
Although you may hear the word patent thrown around like it's one overarching term, there are actually numerous types of patents, and they all serve different purposes. The most common are utility patents and design patents. Utility patents are issued for the invention of a new and useful machine or process, and are also referred to as 'patents for invention.' Design patents, on the other hand, are issued for the ornamental design of a particular product, and prevent any other parties except the owner from using it. In addition, you need to remember that a patent is different from a trademark, although they can be used together. For example, Apple has trademarked the symbol that appears on their technology, and the technology itself, too.

Know your patents
If you're requesting a utility patent, you need to know that the patent will last for a full 20 years from the date of application priority filing. In contrast, a design patent only lasts 14 years from the date the patent is granted. Before you become one of the nearly 600,000 people requesting patents annually (a number that has increased dramatically in the last decade), you need to know what you're signing up for. Patent lawyers will help you understand all of this, but it's always helpful to do some research on your own before taking serious steps forward.

Hire a lawyer
Design patent law firms in Minneapolis work the same way that any other patent attorney services do. The only difference? The best design patent law firms in Minneapolis are ready to help you with your patent application. Hiring a patent attorney is the most important step in the patent process, and there are lawyers out there who are ready to help you secure your intellectual property.

Don't risk losing your intellectual property rights by failing to act.

Register for patent, trademark or copyright protection by calling Kaufhold & Dix at 612-216-1161.

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Edina, MN 55439

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