Posts Tagged: "cost"

Confessions of a Frustrated Patent Attorney: The Telephone Call

I used to receive telephone calls, quite frequently, asking about the procedure for preparing and filing a patent application. Today, I no longer receive these calls. I suspect the main reason is that inventors are giving up an expectation that patent protection is even worthwhile. And I get it. If I were to get a call these days, I could no longer paint a rosy picture for would-be patentees… But these days, I fear the conversation would have a different tone. It might go more like this… “for a mere $2,625,000 you can disclose your most important innovation to your competitors, and they can use it and make sure that you actually have no rights to it.”

The Cost of Obtaining a Patent in the US

Estimating US patent costs is a difficult matter because so much depends on the technology involved, but answering “it depends” is not particularly insightful or helpful. What follows are some general ballpark estimates, which should give at least some guidance when trying to budget for the filing of a patent application at the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Around and Around We Go: The Drug Development Debate

Every once and a while we get a clear example of the gulf between those battling over important public policy issues and can understand why the public and policy makers are confused by resulting charges and counter charges. The Tuft’s study estimates that the costs of drug development have doubled from $802 million in their 2001 study to $2.6 billion today… After summarizing the Tuft’s findings, the Post invited longtime critic Jamie Love to comment. Love, who unsuccessfully petitioned the National Institutes of Health to regulate prices for any drug developed from federal funding said: “First impression: the study, which is part of a public relations campaign by the drug companies to justify high prices, is long on propaganda, and short of details.”

Patent Pricing – You Get What You Pay For

It takes time to prepare a detailed written disclosure that will support any number of claims, and there is just no way to rush it. Inventors and entrepreneurs intuitively know this, but still some get lured into believing that what they get for $1,200 is just as good as what they would get if they paid $8,000, which is unrealistic of course. You should not fall for what you want to hear when you deep down know it makes no sense. If you aren’t convinced ask yourself this: When you were in school and you had to write a paper for a grade, was the resulting paper better if you spent more time or less time working on the project? The reality is the more time you have to spend the better the work product. If you are not paying very much then you realistically cannot expect the same number of hours, nor can you expect the same level of quality.

Patent Reality: Basement Prices Mean Basement Quality

When finances are difficult people look to themselves for assistance, and to figure out how they can make a better tomorrow without relying on anyone else. But if you do not have enough resources to pursue a plan in a manner that is likely to succeed all that you have done is waste time and money. Yes, the dirty little secret is that being cost conscious and seemingly financially responsible can lead exactly to the point where you didn’t want to be. The truth is that if you cut too many corners in the invention to patent to commercialization cycle your odds of succeeding go down dramatically. Being cheap is not synonymous with being fiscally responsible.

The Cost of Obtaining a Patent in the US

How much you will spend on a patent application also depends upon what it is that you want to do with the patent and whether there are realistic market opportunities. In the event there are realistic market opportunities you may spend more even on something that is simple to make sure that you have covered the invention enough to have a strong resulting patent. By way of example, you could probably find an attorney to write a patent for a business method or computer software for quite cheap, but a cheap computer related patent would not be nearly as strong as a patent application costing $20,000 or more. The devil is always in the details. Getting a stronger patent requires more claims and more attention to providing an adequate disclosure and describing as many alternatives, options, variations and different embodiements as possible. This, of course, requires greater attorney time and higher filing fees, which in turn requires more time spent working with the patent examiner to get the patent issued.