January 22, 2019 at 1:39 pm #7435Anonymous
Hi, everyone. I have a new and novel innovation. It is a garden invention that is extremely inexpensive to produce. I have no doubt every garden store in my state will carry it, I won’t get the box stores but a small extra income on the side. I do not have the money to patent it, so my question is if I produce and sell the product and a year from now someone puts a patent on it will I lose the right to continue to produce it? FYI I do know how to do a patent search and did not find any prior art relating to this invention.January 22, 2019 at 1:44 pm #7436VeronicaParticipant
Hi.From what I understand, you can protect yourself for a year with a provisional patent application, which is pretty inexpensive (like a hundred bucks). That way you can list it as “patent pending” while you gather the necessary resources to get a patent. Good luck!January 22, 2019 at 1:50 pm #7437JulianParticipant
Hi….you can seek patent info from uspto.org. many people are choosing to forgo the patent process in order to take advantage of first market sales simply realize that you would be most likely giving up any rights to patent your product due to prior public disclosure. Only you can weigh the risk it’s highly likely that if you have a popular product someone will knock you off and without any patent protection you would lose any rights to be compensated for your invention however maybe that doesn’t matter in your case maybe you would make enough money where it didn’t matter those are Personal decisions….. and yes I agree it would be best to talk to your attorney so that you understand what you would be giving up even assuming you could be granted a patent…which is no guarantee, of course, best to you. There is one other compelling argument for a patent search and that is you may be inadvertently infringing on another patent and find yourself at the wrong end of this deal where you would owe somebody money for infringing on their patent… So tread carefullyJanuary 22, 2019 at 1:51 pm #7438MaiaParticipant
Firstly, the answer to your big question is ‘no’ someone cannot come behind you and get a ‘utility patent’ on a device that you have been selling! Because you have been selling it your device is automatically in the public domain one year from the date you first disclosed it. ‘IF you don’t file for a patent during that year.
On the other side of that coin is that without a patent you have NO legal recourse to stop ANYONE ELSE from making and selling your exact product.
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