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Do you need a provisional patent?

After years of careful research, planning, hard work and sacrifice, you have finally come up with an invention you want to patent. If it is still in the developmental stages and you want first-to-invent rights to it, you may want to consider filing a provisional patent. Many believe that provisional patents are a waste of time and resources. However, there are some ways it can benefit your situation. 

Here are some reasons why you may want to pursue a provisional patent. 

Time to test the waters 

Not all inventions are successful. You may not want to waste your resources on a product or idea that has not been vetted. Since your invention is still in development, you may need more time to work out the kinks and perfect it.

A provisional patent provides you with a 12-month window to complete your invention or idea and market it. If you decide during that time frame that you want to move ahead with the patent process, you will need to file an application for a nonprovisional application to patent your invention. 

Cannot afford the non-provisional patent process 

Patents are not cheap, and many inventors are not wealthy. You may have limited funds and cannot afford to pay the fees for the patent application fee and legal assistance. A provisional patent can buy you a year's worth of time to come up with the funds you need to apply for a patent. 

Maintains privacy 

Once you are awarded a patent for an idea or invention, anyone can look it up. It is no longer private. This can create some complications if you are still perfecting your invention. A provisional patent can offer you some privacy so you can protect your ideas and keep them from becoming public. It also lessens the likelihood of someone coming up with similar ideas and filing to become the first patent holder for them before you do. 

You should keep in mind that a provisional patent does not take the place of a traditional patent. Once the 12-month period expires, anyone can file for and receive a patent for your invention. A provisional patent is essentially a placeholder that buys you extra time if you need it during the patent process.

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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7400 Metro Blvd, Suite 420
Edina, MN 55439

Phone: 612-216-1161
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Sioux Falls, SD 57108

Phone: 605-334-1571
Fax: 605-334-1574
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