The Patent Search Process

  • Jun 28 2019

Do I still need a patent search if my idea is not on the market?

The patent search process is at times overlooked, but is a crucial first step to pursuing a patent for your new invention.  Inventors excited about their new concept may be in a rush to simply write and submit the application. However, failing to conduct a proper patent search could mean a significant amount of wasted time and expense pursuing a patent that has already been disclosed. Even if there is nothing on the market that resembles your idea, there may well be products similar to your invention that simply haven’t been pursued, or haven’t succeeded in coming to market.  Before you set off on the journey of seeking a patent, enlist the assistance of a New York patent attorney to conduct a thorough product clearance search.

The Importance of a Patent Search

Filing a patent application comes at some expense and often after the exertion of significant time.  The last thing any inventor wants to do is spend a lot of time on a patent, only to receive a rejection because the patent was blocked by prior art.  By conducting a thorough patent search, you will not only avoid wasted time, but the end result can be a much stronger patent application.  

Should your patent search reveal similar prior art, you can adapt your idea as needed to avoid this art.  A patent search can help you to identify all of your potential competitors and uncover all patents or pending patent applications that are similar to your invention.  

Why You Need an Attorney to Perform a Patent Search

Though small inventors may be tempted to perform their own online search, doing so comes with risks of overlooking blocking art.  A patent attorney has the skill and experience to know what databases to search and, most importantly, what terms to search. The language of patents is akin to a foreign language for most non-attorneys, and overlooking the correct search term can lead to missed information.  Further, your patent attorney will do more than just search for prior art. Your attorney will synthesize their findings to guide you towards the development of a product that is more likely to withstand the rigorous patent application process. 

Posted in: Patents