You have an idea, what comes next? This may be the question you’re asking yourself as a new inventor. We can help at SearchQuest™ Patent Search!
Once you have an idea, before you do anything else, get a comprehensive patent and product search done. Why is this comprehensive search so important? Because you can’t patent something that has ever been done before, even if it was done in another country!
Before you invest time and money on a patent attorney, filing for a patent application, or an engineer to help with designing a prototype, you need to find out if your idea warrants going farther. You need to be able to answer these questions below about your idea before you begin the patent application process.
— Do any past or present U.S. patents exist covering similar products?
— Do any past or present international patents exist covering similar products?
— Do any unpublished but pending patent applications exist for similar products?
— Are there any similar non-patented products being sold in the U.S. or elsewhere (or) does a products similar to mine exist in the public domain already?
What is the public domain?
The public domain is everything that is already out there that can be found. Most existing products are not patented, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t a part of the public domain. Unfortunately, most patent searches don’t take the time to search products that fall under the public domain umbrella.
Unpatented products can, however, negate the issuance of a patent on a similar invention, or render an issued patent unenforceable. Simply put, it can derail the entire journey of getting your idea to market.
It absolutely imperative that you don’t proceed with filing a patent application taking only the first two bullet points above into consideration. The unfortunate part is that many patent searches will only include the patent databases for the USPTO and the international market, although often times, that international component is excluded as well.
Searches can cost anywhere from $500-$2000 and only provide you 25-50% of the information you need to proceed. Remember, just because you haven’t seen your invention in a Google search or on a store shelf in the United States, doesn’t mean that it hasn’t been invented somewhere else.
Other Crippling Short Cuts Other Companies Take
Many search companies in the field will also only search using “keywords.” Unfortunately, this produces results which merely reflect U.S. patent history over the past thirty years. That’s not going to cut it when the USPTO patent agent assigned to your patent knows how to look back a lot further.
Why Should You Use SearchQuest™ Patent Search?
SearchQuest offers a truly comprehensive approach to compiling data for your search report. Our searchers will utilize the USPTO and WIPO search engines to search with “Keywords” and by “Class”. That means we look at the USPTO’s official classification system and search by those types of classifications. Consequently, this combined approach to searching produces results covering patents issued as far back as 1790.
Our searchers will do a deep dive into the public domain to see if they can find anything that might impact how your patent should be written. They will review drawings as well as written text, check patents in foreign languages as necessary, and provide you the best report possible for a flat fee of US$ 499.00
Your search is typically completed in less than 14 days. Patent copies, when available, and an itemized search report, will be sent to you by snail mail.
Don’t Spend a Dime Before It’s Time!™
Consistent with our founding principles, we at SearchQuest™ Patent Search believe that none of our clients should spend money prematurely. Thus, we subscribe to the motto of The Inventors’ Roundtable, i.e., “Don’t Spend a Dime Before It’s Time”™*. In keeping with this motto, a free USPTO patent search tutorial is made available on this web site by clicking on the word “Free” on the menu above. We believe that we are the only search company in the world that offers a free patent search tutorial for its clients.
There are at least five good reasons for doing your own patent search prior to turning the matter over to a professional patent search firm like SearchQuest. They are:
1. You will save yourself the cost of a professional search if you find your invention on your own.
2. You will learn about similar inventions that have been patented in the past.
3. Doing your own patent search will help you refine and improve your invention.
4. You may not find a similar invention, at which time a professional, international search is highly recommended**.
5. You can give a professional search company valuable supplemental information about your invention that you found during your search. Any information you can supply to a search company helps them provide you with a better search.
IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: Please note that even if you chose our Comprehensive Search product offering (as opposed to one or more of our more limited product offerings), the search we conduct will be a “patent and product search” solely. This means it does not include an evaluation of prior art and how it relates to your ability to get a patent.
However, if you desire professional help in evaluating your search results, we can provide you with this service for an additional fee. Please write to us at email@example.com to have someone contact you in order to arrange to have one of our IP professionals provide such assistance.
* Don’t Spend a Dime Before It’s Time!™ is a licensed trademark of The Inventors’ Roundtable.
** Patents cost thousands or ten’s of thousands of dollars. A SeachQuest patent search will provide valuable information to you and your patent attorney or agent when filing your patent application. A typical, simple mechanical type product search is $499. More complex electrical, software, or biological searches may cost more and will be quoted on a case-by-case basis.