There’s a lot of inventing going on in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. According to the DFW Technology 2011 special CEO report by D magazine, the Texas region is second only to California’s Silicon Valley as the largest technology business center in the United States.
New ideas are coming from start-ups, established companies, North Texas universities, and entrepreneurs. Since all these creations require patent protection, it’s only fitting that the area is home to many patent lawyers.
When deciding on a patent attorney in Fort Worth, TX, and its surrounding area, keep these key factors in mind to ensure you are well represented.
1. Look for patent attorneys with a background in the field applicable to your invention, such as science, engineering, mathematical, etc. As with most attorneys, patent lawyers also specialize in different areas of intellectual property, while larger firms offer it in addition to other practice areas, such as criminal law, bankruptcy, real estate, etc. Consider whether you would feel more comfortable with a smaller firm that just practices in intellectual property, patents, trademarks, and copyrights.
Remember, a patent application is only as good as the patent lawyer drafting it. A well-written patent application that properly specifies all the claims for your idea will:
- Ensure it can’t be easily copied and sold by others.
- Not get refused by the patent examiner.
- Hold up in court.
- Command the money from licensees.
As you can see, selecting the best patent lawyer for your idea is a crucial step in the patent process.
2. Hire a registered patent attorney. Without being registered by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the lawyer cannot represent you as the inventor before the agency. The designation is proof that the attorney passed the USPTO examination, complies with USPTO regulations, is of good moral character and has a good reputation.
Only registered patent attorneys have the required legal, technical and scientific qualifications. In addition to a law degree, the lawyer must have a college degree in engineering, physical science, or an equivalent.
3. Make sure you feel comfortable and at ease talking and relating to the attorney before hiring the person. Once you hire a patent attorney, this person will be acting as your representative with the USPTO. As such, all correspondence from the USPTO will be going to your attorney, not you. So, you need to feel like you can contact your patent lawyer at any time and trust that you are well represented.
Some thinks to observe during your in-person consultation before hiring a lawyer are:
- How attentive is the attorney when discussing the firm’s patent services?
- When discussing your needs, is he or she listening fully or are there distractions?
- Are you given unhurried responses to your questions?
- Is the person interested in the details of your idea and fully engaged?
- Will the attorney you are speaking with be the one handling your case or will it be handed off to other members in the firm? If others will be working on your patent application, be sure to inquire about their qualifications and track record.
4. The process being used by the law office. Most patent attorneys or law firms have protocols they follow when working with clients looking to patent an idea. For example, some might ask you to complete a questionnaire so they can learn more about your goals and plans for your invention.
Others might have a patent evaluation process or assign different attorneys to work on the different stages to filing a patent application.
However the lawyer or firm works, you should be comfortable with the process and fully understand it, as well as how you will be billed.
5. Consider a patent services firm, like Lonestar Patent Services, instead of hiring a patent attorney. We use registered patent attorneys and do much more than file your patent application. At Lonestar, we have all the necessary idea development and marketing services to take your idea from concept to market.
When looking for a patent attorney in Fort Worth, TX, remember that you have options. It’s in your best interest to have one firm handle all your patent needs from start to finish. That’s what Lonestar Patent Services can do for you. All you have to do is reach out and contact us.
We’re ready to get your idea ironclad patent protection that will hold up to competitors, plus get your product to market so you can start receiving the financial rewards you deserve from your invention.