This is only the first of many steps towards commercializing an idea, and making money from it. Other steps involve nourishing the idea, investing in it, and, most crucially, protecting the idea from others. This, most vital, part of commercializing an idea can also be the most complex step that you take, since registering a patent is not an easy job. This is why there are numerous attorneys at law that specialize in the area of patenting and intellectual property.
If you want your idea to flourish, it is only natural that you would want it to be in safe and knowledgeable hands. This is why hiring a good and trusted patent attorney is very important. But, first things first. You must first decide what do you need the lawyer for and what type of a patent lawyer suit your needs in the best possible manner.
Doing the research – know what you need
When dealing with the subject of intellectual property, it is vital to know that this area of the law covers a wide range of legal issues that need to be addressed in the proper manner. Entertainment law, media law, contract law and copyright law are just some parts of the law that need to be addressed in order to be completely sure that your patent is protected.
However, this all depends on the nature of your idea. If you decide on solely embarking on a creating and selling innovative ideas and products, then an attorney that is strictly specialized in the areas of copyright and patenting is what you need. However, if you wish to publicize your product, you deal with designs and plan on working online, then you would need someone who is also well-learned in the area of media law, as well as patents and copyright.
It is also advised that you see exactly how much, and what type of, competition you currently have on the market. This can be done by going through the Patent Office Register and checking whether there are already patented ideas that are similar to yours. Having more competition means that you must hire a more experienced lawyer to deal with the situation. This, however, means that you will have to pay more money for legal protection.
For business owners whose businesses have a legal department, as well, it would be advisable to check whether the attorneys at the resident legal department are skilled in those areas of the law, because, if they are, then your business would spend a lot less money on legal representation.
Know where to search
Finding a good patent attorney may not be as easy as you might think. The absolute worst thing that you can do (and this is not only for finding an attorney, but for any profession) is to go on Google and search “patent attorneys”. This will only yield promoted results that are certainly not good enough for your needs. Also, you should avoid asking around business and private circles for a good attorney, because recommendations can usually be very subjective and can only misguide you in your search.
The most advisable way is to consult the website of a government agency that is concerned with patents, and obtain a list of registered patent attorneys and law firms. These lists will offer a variety of filters that will make it easier for you to find exactly what kind of a lawyer you need. When you have selected a few, conduct a Google search for them, and see how they are represented on the Internet.
Meeting eye-to-eye – doing the preliminary interview
Once you have selected a few attorneys that you think will suit you the best, the final step in choosing the right one would be to go and find their offices. There you can see whether they are taking new clients and you can schedule an interview.
It is in both your and the attorney’s best interest that this interview goes as best as possible. He must suit your need, but you must prove to be a valuable customer, as well. This is why you should approach this interview as you would a business meeting. Go well-dressed and well-prepared.
State your case and see if you can interest the attorney in your case. If the attorney deems the venture profitable and you see that he or she is trustworthy, then you should let him or her handle your patent case. If not, keep searching until you find a good match.
Protecting the idea and obtaining a patent is too complex a task to be performed by someone who is a layman in this area of the law. This is why it is recommended that you let a patent attorney handle the process instead, since he or she will know what to do and how. Choosing a right attorney for you can be complicated, but following these guidelines will hopefully make the process easier.
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This is a guest post. Damian is a blogger and a freelance writer. He mostly writes about finance and business, but other topics are not strange for him. Damian currently works for phoenixip.com.au patent attorneys from Australia.