Step 1 - Make an Appointment to Meet with one of our Attorneys
Schedule a free consultation with Kaufhold & Dix. This is your opportunity to discuss your ideas with us so that we can learn about your needs and goals. With this information, we can provide you the best advice possible to get you and your ideas where you want them to be. While you do not need prototypes or drawings that are manufacturer ready, anything you can provide which explains or demonstrates your idea will be helpful.
Step 2 - Determine if Your Idea is New
If after speaking with us you determine that protection is worth pursuing, we will usually, though not always, suggest performance of a prior art search and legal opinion. During this process, our professional searcher will do a worldwide patent prior art search to determine whether or not your idea is new. When performing the search, the searcher typically locates between ten and fifteen of the closest prior art references publicly available. These references are then provided to the attorney who reviews the references and drafts a legal opinion letter discussing whether or not your idea is potentially patentable. This legal opinion letter, and the references are then given to you for your review.
Step 3 - Prepare an Application
Should you be provided with a positive patentability opinion and you decide to proceed with a patent application, the attorney will use your information to have drawings prepared by our professional drafter. Once the drawings are ready, and usually pre-approved by you, the attorney will write the application. The application and drawings are then sent to you for your review, approval, and necessary signatures prior to filing the application. At filing with the United States Patent and Trademark Office you will be patent pending and can freely market your invention for the purpose of manufacturing, selling or licensing your idea without fear of another taking your idea.
Step 4 - Prosecution Transactions with the USPTO
Once filed, the United States Patent and Trademark Office will examine your application for patentability. This process can be very time consuming and the USPTO's first response is usually 12 to 24 months after your filing. These responses are called office actions and we can typically expect one to three office actions during the examination process. Because our firm has complete flat fee service, we will handle these actions without billing you and will prosecute your application until the first of a final rejection or an allowance. If you do receive a final rejection, depending on the circumstances, there are usually additional options for you to keep moving your application forward in the hopes of achieving an allowance. Once allowed, the government issue fee is paid by you and a patent is issued to you which gives you the right to prevent others from copying your patented invention.