There are various types of patent searches, each designed to address specific questions and objectives. There are four types of searches:
We will be pleased to discuss your strategic objectives and recommend the search to meet your goals. Please read more to learn the purposes and details about these searches.
To obtain patent protection in almost any jurisdiction an invention must be useful and non-obvious. It must also be new – or more commonly referred to as being novel. A patentability search is a search of patent literature (publicly available at the time of search). When we conduct this search on your behalf, it is focused primarily at the question of current state of the art – the search allows us to identify the key factors that make you “stand out of the crowd” and claim them in your patent application. This search is similar to what the Examiner will do during Patent Examination process – and by performing the search we are able to manage the Examination in a more effective way.
Typically, a patentability search is conducted before a patent application is prepared to determine current state of the art. The search result will help the patent drafter write a patent application that positions the inventive contribution of your new product over the prior art. It will help preempt Examiner rejections and thereby speed up prosecution.
There may not be value in developing your concept further if it is not patentable. If it is however, the search results can strengthen your patent application by enabling the patent drafter to compose a broad set of claims without encroaching on prior art.
There are numerous other benefits and things you should know about conducting a patentability search – far too many to list here. Please Contact Us for assistance.
Patent infringement occurs when a person or an organization makes, uses, sells, or imports a patented product without permission from the patent owner. Infringement is the commercial harm brought to the patent owner as result of the infringement.
It is prudent to exercise care to avoid infringement by ordering and studying search results for similar products and obtaining a non-infringement opinion. Although a non-infringement opinion is not a guarantee of non-infringement, it can serve to reduce the likelihood that your product will become entangled in a patent dispute. Moreover, in certain jurisdictions if you are found liable for infringement, your damages calculation could be tripled if you can’t prove you took every possible care to avoid infringement – literally, hadn’t obtained non-infringement opinion.
Many organizations we have spoken with have invested heavily in R&D and patent portfolio development; only to discover that the technology they were working on had been protected by a competitor’s patent. We are often asked, “When is the right time to conduct a Non-infringement Patent Search?”
The answer is unique to each organization and depends on the circumstances at the time. If we conduct the search too early, as in the early stage research phase, the final product may emerge quite differently rendering the search inapplicable. Waiting too long may also be a problem since the project could have advanced to a point where it cannot be feasibly changed.
We can work with you at any point along the product life cycle to get your product patented and cleared for commercialization.
The time to conduct a validity search is before you assert, license or buy a patent so you can confirm that the patent is in fact enforceable. This assurance puts you in a stronger negotiating position knowing that the patent can weather an attack on its validity. Alternatively, when you are accused of patent infringement, it is time to check the validity of the patent in scope.
A patent validity Search is a comprehensive prior art search conducted after patent has been issued.
The search can be used for the purpose of validating the enforceability of a patent’s claims or, depending on your objective, to invalidate one or more claims of a patent. Depending on your purpose for the search it may be referred to as Validity Patent Search or Invalidity Patent Search.
If you are confronted with the allegation of a patent infringement, your first line of defense is to prove the patent is invalid. Patent infringement judgments have been known to exceed hundreds of millions of dollars. It is prudent to enlist the help of experienced professionals to provide evidence for your defense. Many clients have engaged our services to help them in/validate patents.
A landscape search will give you crucial information that you need to know about your competitors. You’ll learn what they are patenting in your field, which ones are now entering the market and areas where you could command a competitive advantage. You will receive the most up-to-date analysis of competitors patenting in any area of technology.
The best time to order a landscape search is in early-stage R&D phase. The report will help you make decisions that will enhance your business plan and closely align it with your intellectual property strategy. It will help you to minimize risk, discover new opportunities, guide you in the development of future projects and help you shape your IP portfolio.
We use proprietary techniques and analytical tools to explore patent databases to produce our landscape search results. Our skills go far beyond conducting effective landscape searches. We also have expertise in all disciplines required to interpret the results and advise you from a technical, legal and business perspective. Our team will provide you an in-depth qualitative evaluation of the patents within particular technology field.
We’ll deliver a comprehensive report detailing our findings together with competitive business intelligence and recommendations as to how you can best position yourself within the technology/business sector landscape – all in an easy-to-read format.
Contact Us to learn more.