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What is a patent?

You may have heard of a patent before and seen the phrase “patent pending” on the side of a product or the box. However, you may not know what a patent is or where and how to get Patents filed with our patent strategy and managementone. The patent lawyers and attorneys at Cincy Patents are experienced in patent strategy and management and can assist you in obtaining a patent, which is a property right granted to an inventor, from the U.S. Government. You can also browse through our 10 Important Facts About Patents. Also, you can fill out an Invention Disclosure Form before you begin discussing your patent strategy and management with us.

An issued patent gives the inventor the right to exclude others from making, using or selling the invention for a term of 20 years from the date of filing the patent application. In return for this period of exclusivity, the inventor must disclose in the patent application details of the invention so that others may learn how to make and use the invention. From this period of exclusive control of the invention, the inventor gains a legal monopoly in the market place, and society gains through the further advancements that may be made on the technology.

What Can Be Patented

A few patented items: light bulb, phonograph, typewriter, telephonePractically everything which is made by man is patentable. A patent may be granted to anyone who invents or discovers any new, useful and non-obvious process, machine, manufacture, or composition of matter, or any new and useful improvements thereof.

The word “process” is defined to be a process or method. New processes, primarily industrial or technical processes, may be patented. The term “manufacture” refers to articles which are made, and includes all manufactured articles. The term “composition of matter” relates to chemical compositions and may include mixtures of ingredients as well as new chemical compounds. These classes of subject matter taken together include practically “anything under the sun which is made by man.” Naturally occurring chemicals and compositions of matter are not patentable, but the purified form or the use in a process of such chemicals and compositions of matter can be patented.

Under Patent Law, An Invention Must Meet These Criteria
The invention must be new. The invention is not patentable if it is known or used by others, or described in a publication anywhere in the world, prior to making your invention, or if known or used by you or others more than one year prior to filing an application for a patent. It is important for inventors to be able to describe how their inventions differ from the existing state of the art.

The invention must not be an obvious extension of a previous invention, i.e. of prior art. The subject matter sought to be patented must be sufficiently different from what has been used or described before that it may be said to be unobvious to a person having ordinary skill in the area of technology related to the invention.

The invention must have a useful effect or a purpose. If there is no use for the invention, it is not patentable. Further, the use may not be illegal.


See The Patent Process






Types of Patents

The patent law provides for the granting of three categories of patents:

Utility Patents are granted for any new process, method, machine, manufacture, or compositions of matter, or any new and useful improvement thereof.

Design Patents are granted for new, original and ornamental design for an article of manufacture. The appearance of the article is protected.

Plant Patents are granted for distinct and new varieties of plants that have been invented or discovered and asexually reproduced.


The process can be costly, but we can assist you through your patent strategy and management process.

If you would like to engage our patent application services to help you with determining whether your invention may be patentable, fill out an Invention Record for your invention.

Be sure to include the date the invention was first reduced to practice and whether you have sold or offered to sell your invention to another party or the public. We will promptly reply by providing you with a quote for conducting a preliminary patentability search, for providing a patentability opinion, and for preparing and filing a patent application on your behalf.

All communications with our office are held in the strictest confidence.


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