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What kind of patent do I need?

Utility patents protect functional innovation, while design patents protect aesthetic aspects of an article. Both give the holder the right to exclude others from practicing what is claimed in the patent. Patent rights are granted by country and last for a set term of years. For a US utility patent, the term is twenty years from the filing date. For a US design patent, the term is fifteen years from the issue date. At Polson IP Law, we understand how valuable patents are for a business and take the utmost care and pride in our patent practice.

Patentability Opinions

We work closely with our clients, taking the time to know both the invention and the technological field in which a patent for the invention could possibly be used. Analytical assessment to determine the viability of pursuing a patent is equally thorough. When requested, we search and review the prior art for the most relevant references to your invention and not only ascertain whether patent protection is available, but whether that option makes sense, given the expected scope of protection.

Validity Opinions

Not all “inventions” are legally patentable, and not all patents are enforceable. Whether you would like to expand into an apparently patented area or your competitor is successfully marketing its patented technology, we can assist by analyzing whether the patent is in fact valid. Likewise, we will help you evaluate options and cost-benefit in deciding whether to undertake action to invalidate a patent, as discussed below.

Infringement Opinions

Perhaps you have received an infringement warning letter or have become aware of a competitor’s patent, raising concerns that your business activities may infringe another’s patent. We can help put your mind at rest by comparing your allegedly-infringing products against the patent claims to analyze potential liability. Likewise, we can evaluate competitor products for potential infringement of your patent rights.

Drafting & Prosecution (Domestic/International)

We have substantial experience drafting and prosecuting patent applications before the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) which have been issued over a wide spectrum of technical areas. Moreover, we are highly familiar with foreign patent laws and protection. At Polson IP Law, international patent applications (the Patent Cooperation Treaty [PCT] for utility; Hague for design) are a core component of our practice that allow us to secure your priority filing date in other countries. We have an extensive network of trusted legal partners around the world, once you are ready to pursue protection in individual foreign countries. We will continue to oversee and manage the application process in each territory to reach the best available outcome.

Invalidations & Observations

If appropriate, we will fight for you to invalidate another patent by instituting reexamination or review proceedings before the USPTO. Although the goal is to render a patent invalid, there are many different considerations in selecting a specific type of proceeding, and we will counsel you in choosing the right course. For example, if there is a pending application by a competitor, and the application has not issued yet, we may file observations in the application. The observations would identify relevant references and explain why patent protection is unavailable, both for domestic and international applications. Likewise, we will vigorously defend your patent or application to overcome any invalidation or observations filed against it.


We assess potential infringement and assert your patent rights when necessary. Whether you want the other party to cease and desist or would like to explore licensing opportunities, we do our best to assist in making your patent investment work for you. What’s more, we can monitor competitor activity and inform you of application publications and patent grants.


Once you have an issued patent, we remain involved in docketing to provide notice so that all the required fees can be paid on time to keep your patent in good standing. And, if your patent is ever challenged, we are there for you to help defend your rights.

LEGAL DISCLAIMERS – All content of this website is provided for general informational purposes only.  This information is neither legal advice nor intended as legal advice, and you should not consider this information to be legal advice.  No guarantees are made to the accuracy of any information, and you should not rely on this information for any reason.  The information contained on this website does not necessarily reflect the views of our firm or its clients.  If you are looking for legal advice, you should seek counsel from a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction.

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