Below are 8 reasons why it is important to do a worldwide patent search before applying for a patent:
- To determine whether you can get a patent. Just because you have never seen the idea before does not mean it has not been patented.
- File a stronger patent application. The idea may be an improvement on existing prior art and could still be patentable. The search would find similar patents and the patent application could be drafted carefully to avoid infringing existing prior art and focus on originality.
- A complete report will show which areas of the idea are original.
- A professional patent search can save the inventor a lot of time and money if a match is found and a patent is unlikely to be obtained. It is better to establish this as soon as possible to minimise time and money spent on an idea that is not original enough.
- Potential investors or representatives of industry may well wish to see a professional patent search to establish the potential of an idea. The information contained in a patent search increases the chances of a profitable return.
- Where the invention appears to be knew through the patent search, the results will help the wording of the patent application in ensuring it is broad enough to cover scope of the invention novelty.
- To obtain commercial information of companies who may wish to license the idea from you. If similar patent document are found, but your idea is still shown to be novel, then you may be able to find a buyer for your idea among the owners of existing patents for similar products.
- It allows you to see what other inventors have already thought of.
You can learn more about patent searching by looking at our main page on conducting a Worldwide Patent Search
By: Barbara Bouffard