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The United States Patent and Trademark Office Patent

The United States Patent and Trademark Office Patent

What is the USTPO?
The United States Patent and Trademark Office is a government agency in the United States Department of Commerce, which issues patents to inventors and businesses for the production of new inventions. The United States Patent and Trademark Office also will supply individuals or businesses with trademark registrations for products and intellectual property identification purposes. The USTPO is located in Alexandria, Virginia, following a 2006 move from the Crystal City jurisdiction of Arlington, Virginia. 
The USTPO is headed by David Kappos, who was sworn into office following the United States Senate’s confirmation of his appointment by the President Barack Obama. The USTPO cooperates with various patent offices, such as the European Patent Office and the Japan Patent Office as one of the three international Trilateral Patent Offices. 
The Mission of the USPTO is legally based in Article 1, Section 8 of the United States Constitution, where the powers of Congress are defined as possessing the ability to “promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.”
The mission of the United States Patent and Trademark Office is to promote industrial and technological progress in the United States and to strengthen the United States economy by administering the laws relating to patents and trademarks; advising the President of the United States, the Secretary of Commerce and the administration on patent, trademark and copyright protection and to provide advice on the trade-related aspects of intellectual property. 
What is a USTPO Patent?

A USTPO patent is an exclusive right granted by a state, particularly a national government, to an inventor or assignee, for a limited amount of time in exchange for a public disclosure of an invention or idea.
The procedure for issuing a USTPO patent, the requirements placed on the holder of the USTPOI patent and the extent to which the exclusivity rights protect the invention or idea will remain constant in varying locations. That being said, there are different types of USTPO patents available depending on the underlying invention or idea. In most cases, a USTPO patent application will include one or more claims to define the invention; to obtain a USTPO patent, the idea or invention must be new, useful, non-obvious or industrially applicable. 
A USTPO patent offers the creator of a particular invention or idea the exclusive right to prevent others from making, using, distributing or selling the patented invention without permission. A USTPO patent is simply, a right to prevent other manufacturers, individuals or producers from using the underling invention or idea. 
Patents are regulated under the World Trade Organization’s Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights; this organization will make patents available to WTO member states for any inventions or ideas relating to all fields of technology. The terms attached to such patents will offer exclusive rights to holders for a minimum of twenty years; however, different types of patents may have varying terms attached to the exclusivity of the underlying patent. 

World Intellectual Property Organization Patent Search

World Intellectual Property Organization Patent Search

What is the WIPO Patent?

The World Intellectual Property Organization is one of the sixteen recognized agencies of the United Nations. The WIPO was created in 1967 to promote and encourage creative activity in alignment with the tangible production of inventions. Furthermore, the WIPO was created to inform and protect the protection of intellectual property throughout the world. The WIPO has 184 member states and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. 
As a result of the WIPO’s mission, the agency aims to inform inventors and those seeking to protect their inventions, as to the intricacies associated with their respective country’s patent laws. One of the fundamental resources offered by the organization is the WIPO patent search. 
The WIPO patent search enables an inventor or business entity to search through over 1.9 million international patent applications to view the latest documents and information available to the International Bureau.  As a result of this comprehensive research tool, the WIPO patent search is used by inventors to cross-reference their particular invention to ensure that they have not infringed upon any previously-invented goods or products. 
The WIPO Patent search sifts through the 1.9 million patented inventions by sorting the various products or creations based on their publication number, application number, publication date, inventor name, English title, national phase country, English abstract international class, a description of the invention or any claims associated with the invention. 
Why is the WIPO Patent Search Important and how do I conduct one?

The WIPO Patent Search is crucial for all inventors because researching which creations are already patented will allow the inventor to refrain from infringing on any ideas or inventions. If an inventor creates something that already has a patent in place, the individual would be unable to create or distribute the product. As a result of this impediment, it is necessary to observe all issued patents if you are interested in obtaining a patent for your unique invention. 
To conduct a WIPO patent search you must visit the World Intellectual Property Organization’s website, located at www.wipo.int. Once you arrive at the WIPO’s website, you can search for the WIPO search tool or you can simply go to www.wipo.int/pctdb/en/ to access the WIPO patent search tool directly. When you access the tool you can enter information regarding your invention or you can research patents that have been issued for a creation similar to yours.

Apple Patents Multi-Touch 3-D Applications

Apple Patents Multi-Touch 3-D Applications

A new Apple patent reveals the company’s ambition to integrate more gesturing into the iPhone, iPad and other devices produced by the leading tech innovator.
The patent covers a gesture-based editing toolbar for the iPad; it suggests a novel approach to manipulating and controlling media by using gestures in the form nearly everything—shapes, symbols, letters or even user-created patterns.
The patent reveals a menu of selected gestures for a number of actions, including facial recognition, creating associations among objects and pointing—thinks Tom Cruise operating the holographic glove-controlled crime-fighting system in Minority Report.
The patent labels a master table of gestures that is not latent in the patent documentation; however, it seems that a user will be able to create new gestures, raising an extensive freedom for use.
The premise of the patent is gesturing by making motions with hand movements or fingers across a multi-touch screen. The patent also mentions 3-D gesturing using the device’s front-facing camera.

Amazon in the Midst of Patent Battles

Amazon in the Midst of Patent Battles

In a recent filing to American financial regulators, Amazon—the online retail force—said that it has been sued 11 times concerning over 30 alleged patent infringements since the beginning of 2011. The claims suspect Amazon’s website personalization technology, cloud computing services, web service and technologies used in the Amazon Kindle are in violation of United States’ Patent Law.
Thus far, two of the 30 allegations have dismissed by the U.S. court system. 
Amazon, in a statement to the Securities and Exchange Commission, said that it would dispute the remaining claims with vigor. These disclosures draw Amazon further into the sticky realm of patent suits. So far, in 2011, the online retail giant has faced three times as many patent infringement suits than it did in the whole of 2010.
Amazon is likely to be targeted by more claimants as it becomes more of a force in the mobile hardware business with the introduction of the Kindle Fire—slated to hit shelves next month. Currently, all of the major tablet and smartphone makers—including Apple, Google, Microsoft, HTC, Samsung and Nokia—are engaged in patent litigation, both against one another and other companies that habitually exploit patent rights. 

Oracle-Google Patent Trial Postponed to 2012

Oracle-Google Patent Trial Postponed to 2012

The judge presiding over the Oracle Corp’s patent lawsuit against Google said in a filing this week that the trial will not happen until next year.
United States’ District Court Judge William Alsup attempted to get Google CEO Larry Page and Oracle CEO to negotiate out of court in numerous face-to-face meetings in San Jose earlier this month.
With mediation and out-of-trial meetings proving fruitless, Alsup is preparing for a trial that he claimed is likely to take a long time; Alsup also claims that the jury selection process will prove arduous.
In the suit, Oracle claims that Google should pay over $6 billion for java technology it used in its Android mobile operating system—Oracle acquired the technologies latent in the system when it purchased Sun Microsystems.
Google’s legal professionals reject the claim and promise to vigorously defend the tech giant in court next year.

Breast Cancer Gene Patents Still Legal Issue

Breast Cancer Gene Patents Still Legal Issue


Can companies patent the genes that cause some types of breast cancer, so that only they can perform the tests for these genes?  The Federal Circuit has said yes—twice—but their decision is being appealed.  The case, started by the ACLU in 2009, may wind up back in front of the Supreme Court again in 2013 if the court grants certiorari.

BRCA1 and BRCA2 were two of the first genes to be identified in causing breast cancer.  Myriad Genetics and the University of Utah Research Foundation obtained patents on these two genes, and they were the only entities that were allowed to license tests that could detect the presence or absence of the genes.  These patents were rigorously enforced, leading many researchers to halt research on the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes due to fears of being sued for patent infringement.

Myriad and the University of Utah Research Foundation even controlled the ability of researchers to look at the genes and create their own testing protocols.  Patent law has long held, even since before the beginnings of the United States, that patents were not available on “products of nature.”  The ACLU interpreted this to mean that the patent on the BRCA1 and BRCA2 was in violation of existing patent law, and they sued in federal district court.

The district court ruled at trial that the patents were illegal, but the appeals court reversed.  The Supreme Court first looked at this issue two years ago and sent the case back to the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, saying that it needed to change the way it was looking at the patents.  In September of 2012, the Federal Court of Appeals ruled once again that the BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene patents did not violate United States law.

The suit is being filed on behalf of several women with the genetic mutation, including women who were unable to find out about their genetic mutations for some time due to the extremely high cost of testing.  At the time when the lawsuit was filed, testing for the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes could cost more than $4,000.

While the Court of Appeals ruled against the ACLU about the specific patents on the genes, there was a silver lining for people hoping for better access to testing in the future.  The Court of Appeals also ruled that any patents on methods for comparing the genes to “wild-type” genes were not in fact legal according to United States patent and trademark law.

The Appeals Court based its ruling on the idea that once the genes being tested are reproduced in a laboratory and divorced from their constituent chromosomes, they are no longer “products of nature” but rather patentable objects of scientific study.  The court said in its decision that if the United States Congress wanted to, it could constitutionally alter patent law in order to forbid the patenting of specific isolated genes, but that no such laws had been passed by Congress.

Sources: uscourts.gov, aclu.org

Patent Forms

Patent Forms


Application Data Sheet (Instructions)
Disclosure Statement (Instructions)

Patently Offensive

Patently Offensive


Summary of Patently Offensive


The term patently offensive refers to obscenity law under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.  The term now mainly address broadcasting

standards under the Federal Communications Commission, but it also applies to publications like adult magazines and other types of adult material. 


How does the Supreme Court label something offensive or obscene?


According to the FCC and the Supreme Court, a broadcast is considered offensive and obscene if it meets criteria under three different statements.  The broadcast is offensive if:


·         “An average person, applying contemporary community standards, must find that the material, as a whole, appeals to the prurient (involving sexual desire) interest”

·         “The material must depict or describe, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct specifically defined by applicable law”

·         “The material, taken as a whole, must lack serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value”


Brief History of Broadcasting Restrictions


The set of restrictions listed in the section above is known as the “Miller Test.”  The term comes from a case that was decided by the Supreme Court on June 21, 1973. 


Before the case was brought to court, Miller mailed a large number of advertisements for illustrated books that were referred to as adult material.  Miller was found guilty of distributing obscene material after he sent five advertising brochures to a restaurant in Newport Beach, California.  The manager of the restaurant never asked for the material, and he opened the envelope without knowing it was adult material. 


The restaurant manager and his mother complained to the police, and Miller was found guilty of distributing obscene material and violated California Penal Code §311.2(a).  The case was appealed and affirmed. 


The brochures advertised a total of four books that were titled Intercourse, Man-Woman, Sex Orgies Illustrated, and An Illustrated History of Pornography.  Pictures of genitalia were displayed throughout the books. 


FCC Restrictions for Patently Offensive Material


Even though there is nothing in the First Amendment that can ban indecent material, broadcasting services can restrict the patently offensive material during certain times of the day.  Federal statute prohibits the use of indecent material between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m.


There is a difference between offensive and obscene material.  The FCC describes indecent material as “language or material that, in context, depicts or describes, in terms patently offensive as measure by contemporary community standards for the broadcast medium, sexual or excretory organs or activities.”  Simply, less offensive material is indecent while the most offensive material is obscene. 


Can I file a complaint about indecent material?


Yes, you can submit a complaint to the FCC and they will review the material and decide of it violates profanity, indecency, or obscenity laws.  If the FCC does not find the description of the indecent material offensive, they will send a dismissal letter.  You have the option to re-file the complaint if you can provide more information.  You can file a complaint by calling 1-888-CALL-FCC.  If you’re submitting any type of media (like a DVD or CD) with the complaint, use the following address:


Federal Communications Commission

Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau

Consumer Inquiries and Complaints Division

9300 East Hampton Drive

Capitol Heights, MD 20743

Sources: https://www.fcc.gov/guides/obscenity-indecency-and-profanity, 

The European Patent Office

The European Patent Office

What is the European Patent Office?
The European Patent Office is one of the two primary components of the European Patent Organization—the other organ is the Administrative Council. The European Patent Office acts as the executive body for the larger organization, while the Administrative Council is responsible for supervising the actions of the larger body. Furthermore, the actual legislative responsibilities to revise the European Patent Convention are found within the Contracting States.
The European Patent Office is the governmental body responsible for granting European patents for the Contracting States to the European Patent Convention. The European Patent Convention will incorporate a single patent grant procedure; the patents granted in the European patent Office are bundles of national patents. 
In addition to granting European patents, the European patent Office is also responsible for establishing search reports for national patent application on behalf of various patent offices throughout Europe, including: France, Greece, Cyprus, Turkey, the Netherlands, Malta, Luxembourg and Italy. 
The European Office is not a legal organization, but instead, a fundamental organ of the European Patent Organization, which possesses a distinct legal personality. The European Patent Office is headquartered in Munich, Germany and possesses branch in the Netherlands, Berlin, Germany and Vienna, Austria. 
Activities of the European Patent Office:

The European Patent Office, in accordance to various International Treaties, is responsible for upholding various procedures in alignment with the issuance of patents. Under international procedure, based widely off the Patent Cooperation Treaty, the European Patent Office will act as the receiving office, an International Searching Authority, a so-called Supplementary International Searching Authority and an International Preliminary Examining Authority. 
The European Patent Office, according to the Patent Cooperation Treaty provides an international procedure for handling all patent applications, referred to as international applications, during the first 30 months following the first filing in any country that follows the Patent Cooperation Treaty. 
The European Patent Office cooperates with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, as well as the Japan Patent Office, as one of the Trilateral Patent Offices in the world. Furthermore, the European Patent Office works with the Korean Intellectual Property Office, the State Intellectual Property Office of the People’s Republic of China and the United States Patent and Trademark Office to form a functional co-operation known as the five IP offices.