WOW! What a way to bring in the New Year! Happy 2018! Enjoy this article interviewing Andrea H. Evans, Esq., owner of The Law Firm of Andrea Hence Evans, LLC.
We’re excited to share that Attorney Andrea Evans’ story is featured as NOVEMBER in the Whose Shoes 2018 Planner! Are you ready to crush your 2018 goals and be inspired and motivated at the same time?
Enjoy Attorney Andrea Evans’ presentation at the 2017 Clio Cloud Conference! Do you want to know what the Refrigerator Social media method is and how it works? Watch the video to learn more!
It’s my favorite holiday- Thanksgiving! I’m THANKFUL for your support and your trust in The Law Firm of Andrea Hence Evans, LLC. During this special time of year, give thanks and be grateful.
If you are ready to be motivated, inspired and organized in 2018, then you are ready to purchase Whose Shoes Are You Wearing 2018 Transformational Planner. Featured in the book for the month of November, Attorney Evans shares her entrepreneurship journey, successes and obstacles. Learn from Attorney Evans and 11 other women whose stories are sure to keep you on track in 2018.
You know what they say about assumptions, right? Too often, people make assumptions about patents, trademarks, copyright.
Intellectual property (IP) is divided into three types, patents, trademarks and copyrights. First, patents protect inventions. Trademarks protect the names of those inventions. Copyrights protect written materials. Be certain that when you are consulting with an attorney or investor about your intellectual property, you are able to speak intelligently. Expressions such as, “Oh, I want to patent my brand” or “I want to trademark my invention” sound like fingernails going across a chalkboard to an IP attorney.
Avoid making assumptions to ensure:
- You don’t waste your time consulting an attorney on something that you don’t own the rights to.
- You don’t spend unnecessary funds and invest them in your IP wisely.
Patents are a type of intellectual property that protect inventions. If you want to find out more about patents, you can visit to www.uspto.gov (United States Patent & Trademark Office). They do a great job of providing generic and free information. Don’t forget to consult with a qualified IP attorney to discuss your specific issue. Remember, Google is not your lawyer! LOL!
THERE IS NO PERCENT RULE
Inventors often ask, “What percent do I need to change the invention so that I can get a patent?” Often, inventors assume that they can invent something or that they can patent something by changing a percent of something that already exists. That is one of the biggest assumptions that people make and it’s very wrong.
Here’s the truth about patentable inventions:
- When you invent something, the invention is required to be useful and solves a problem.
- The invention is required to be novel or new. If you notice that something already exists that’s identical to what you’re doing, even if that person has not filed a patent application on that invention, you can’t file it because your invention is not patentable.
- The invention must be non-obvious. That is, would it be obvious to one of the ordinary skilled within the art, to take what’s out there and combine it to make the invention.
For example, changing the size, shape, color, material or attaching a button instead of a zipper on something are typically obvious changes such that an invention would not be patentable.
What is another patent assumption you’ve heard?
What an accomplished feeling to learn that your novelty search revealed that your invention is patentable. However, will the USPTO agree? Hopefully, they will eventually grant you a patent, but anticipate the time it takes for this to happen and be prepared for the back and forth process of responding to Office Actions.
When you file a patent application at the USPTO, it’s assigned to a Patent Examiner about 3-4 years after filing the application. The Examiner will review the application for informalities and also conduct a prior art search to determine if the invention is patentable. A good prior art search conducted prior to filing the application can help your attorney to draft a strong patent application with patentable claims and it can also help you to anticipate any rejections. Once the application is rejected, the Applicant is given 3 months to respond to the Office Action. At this time, the Applicant can amend their claims and provide arguments to show why the invention is patentable. The response may not necessarily convince the Examiner the first time, but don’t give up! A skilled and qualified Patent Attorney can help you to interpret the Office Action and the Attorney can help you to create an action plan about how to overcome the rejection. If you hit a dead end with the Examiner, you can file an appeal and present your arguments to a panel of USPTO Judges.
Simply put, you can anticipate receiving an office action from the USPTO, but don’t be discouraged. Anytime worth having takes time!
How long did it take the USPTO to register your patent?
So, I have been so busy correcting mistakes! None of you should be Do-It-Yourself-ing (DIYing) your trademark applications. Here’s why! Most people do not understand the trademark application process, they don’t understand the protection they have when they secure a federal trademark, and they are unsure of how to enforce and police their trademarks.
What’s the top reason most people don’t hire an attorney to file their trademark application? LACK OF FUNDS! However, it may be wiser to save money to ensure the application is filed correctly, rather than gambling to secure trademark rights on your own! The attorneys at the United States Patent and Trademark Office are not your attorneys. They are very helpful, but it’s not their job to teach you how to navigate the system.
Remember: A trademark application is a legal document.
Ignorance of the law is not an excuse.
Why do you think trademark applicants should hire a qualified trademark attorney?