What is a Patent?

Before you get an answer to that question, take a moment to ask yourself - what are the advantages of having a real estate property to your name?

  • You can rent it
  • You can use it for your own business venture
  • You can prevent others from using your property without your permission
  • If things are not working, you can simply sell it

 On similar terms, patent is an intellectual property that has all the advantages stated above and one needs to claim it on his/her name.

 A patent is the granting of property right to an inventor, by a sovereign authority.

 This grant provides the inventor exclusive rights to the design, or invention for a designated period (usually 20 years), in exchange for a comprehensive disclosure of the invention. Patent process is generally invoked when the product/process Iprovides a new way of doing something, or offers a new technical solution to an existing problem.

Filling for a patent comes with many advantages. Understanding the pros can enable an inventor to make an informed decision.

Advantages of Patents

  • When an inventor or startup is seeking capital for an idea, they may disclose their invention to potential investors and licensees. It is important to patent an idea to prevent someone else from stealing it, by filing a patent application first.
  • Invoking a patent gives the inventor a legal monopoly on selling, using, distributing, importing, or exporting their creation for a specified time period. This keeps others out of the market for the invention, which can be extremely profitable and beneficial.
  • An inventor may seek a patent to prevent another competitor from improving a product, if the inventor has an idea that infringes on the competitor’s patent.
  • A patent holder can typically charge a premium for an invention because of the restricted competition.
  • Patenting an idea can also help to restrict the competition. A properly filed patent can limit the competition's ability to produce the product and even allow the inventor to demand that they cease production if they are producing the item as well and have never patented it.
  • Patents are extremely valuable for small businesses as they may be able to find investors willing to invest merely for rights to a patent.
  • A patent can provide increased credibility to an inventor and their company.
  • A patent holder can exclude the competition from recreating their product or service.
  • An inventor can profit from selling licenses or selling the patent outright. Though royalties can be a better option for many inventors who may be unable to foot the expense of bringing the idea to market.