What Is The Difference Between A Provisional Patent Application And A Regular Patent Application?

What Is The Difference Between A Provisional Patent Application And A Regular Patent Application?

provisional patent denver attorney

Denver Patent Attorney

A provisional patent application can be filed in the U.S. Patent Office for an invention, and will be pending for exactly one year from the date of filing. Provisional patent applications are never examined by the U.S. Patent Office. During this time, however, the business owner can mark the invention as “Patent Pending” or “Pat. Pend.” A provisional patent application automatically goes abandoned after one year from the date of filing, and so a regular patent application has to be filed claiming priority to the provisional patent application before the one year expires.
A patent attorney can help file regular patent application in the U.S. Patent Office. Unlike the provisional patent application, the regular patent application will be examined by an Examiner at the U.S. Patent Office.
The U.S. Patent Office typically takes 1-3 years (sometimes longer) before they examine a patent application. But during this time, and until the patent application either issues or goes abandoned, you are entitled to mark the invention as “Patent Pending” or “Pat. Pend.” In addition, there is nothing preventing business owners from licensing or selling rights in the patent application (e.g., to a manufacturer), or from selling the product of your invention. In fact, you should get started marketing your invention as soon as the patent application is filed.

Written by

Mark Trenner is an attorney licensed to practice before the United States Patent and Trademark Office. In addition to my law degree, I have technical degrees in electrical engineering, environmental engineering, and civil engineering, and experience in a wide variety of technologies. With over 12 years experience in the intellectual property field, I have prepared, filed, and prosecuted numerous patent applications, trademark applications, and copyright applications. I am also experienced with other intellectual property and business law issues, including helping inventors license their inventions to industry. After practicing as an attorney in several private law firms, I also served as senior patent counsel for the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado for 4 years. Trenner Law Firm was established in 2004 to serve individuals, entrepreneurs, start-ups, small businesses, and large corporate clients and help protect their intellectual property with patents, trademarks, and copyrights. General Information Only - NOT LEGAL ADVICE.