The Path to a Patent, Part I: IP Basics

Presenter: Elizabeth Dougherty
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Elizabeth discussed intellectual property basics during this interactive virtual session. In this module, she provided a brief overview of the different types of IP (patents, trademarks, trade secrets, and copyrights). She reviewed the patenting process from invention to application to issue. Finally, she covered requirements for patentability, how to determine whether a provisional or non-provisional application is right for you, and how to weigh the costs and benefits of hiring a patent attorney.

The Path to a Patent, Part II: Patent Searching

Presenter: Cynthia Sdrewski
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Before you file your patent application, you need to conduct a prior art search. At this virtual presentation, attendees learned about the benefits of searching, how to perform a prior art search using keywords and the Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) system, and how to build a search strategy. The USPTO representative also provided resources for filing your application.


The Path to a Patent, Part III: Drafting a Patent Application 101

Presenters: William Vaughn and Attorney Doug Kim
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Learn how to prepare for a patent during this interactive workshop. USPTO experts and Patent Attorney Doug Kim will share insights on the formalities and requirements of drafting a patent application, as well as common pitfalls to avoid. For example, when do you know you’re ready to apply for a patent? How do you prepare and what questions should you ask an attorney? Watch the webinar recording to learn more and find out about state and regional patent pro bono programs that offer financial aid for inventors.


The Path to a Patent, Part IV: Learn How to Draft Patent Claims

Presenters: Stephen Yanchuk and Attorney Doug Kim
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Claim drafting may be the most important part of protecting your invention. What exactly are they and how do they work in the courtroom? Learn the basics of claim drafting from a USPTO Primary Patent Examiner and an award-winning Patent Attorney. You’ll learn why every word counts and know how to work with your attorney or patent agent to ensure the claims in your application have a tight scope. You’ll also develop a better appreciation of how a patent examiner views a claim during the course of examination.


The Path to a Patent, Part V: Electronic filing in DOCX using Patent Center

Presenter Kimberly Williams
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DOCX is a word processing file format based on open standards, including Extensible Markup Language (XML) that is supported by many popular word processing applications, such as Microsoft Word, Google Docs, Office Online, Pages for Mac, and LibreOffice. As an open standard format, DOCX offers a safe and stable basis for authoring and processing intellectual property documents. Uploading a multi-section document in DOCX format containing the specification, claims abstract and drawings is detected and split into single files for each section and document codes are automatically assigned, which saves initial processing time. A feedback document is generated pre-submission where warnings and errors are pinpointed in a copy of the uploaded document in real time, which reduces time responding to non-compliant notices and enhances the quality of examination.