Just think about how much you rely on descriptions in your everyday life. You depend on them when deciding whether to buy one product over another. You rely on them in restaurants when choosing a dish. You even use them to tell your physician or a service technician about a problem you’re having.
Descriptions are just as important in a patent application. You could call them the meat and potatoes of a patent because without a good description of your invention, its purpose would not be clear to the patent examiner. And without that clarity, your application for a patent would be rejected or denied.
The Components of a Good Patent Description
It’s all in the details when it comes to writing an acceptable description for a patent. The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) requires a high level of detail, where specifics rule the day.
Among other things, the specification of a patent requires a written description of the invention. The main goal of the invention description is to clearly convey information about the subject matter and the inventor’s possession of it.
According to the USPTO, descriptions should include one or more of the following: descriptive words, diagrams, figures, formulas, or structures. To demonstrate possession, the USPTO recommends:
- Descriptions of the invention in actual practice, such as testing.
- Including drawings or the structure of a formula.
- Describing distinguishing characteristics that identify your invention.
Separate and apart from the description are two additional requirements: enablement and best mode. Since you are applying for a patent to protect your invention from replication when it’s available in the public domain, the enablement portion requires you to describe the invention in a manner that would allow others in the industry to make and use it. In exchange for this full disclosure, the government grants you exclusive rights.
The best mode portion should describe the preferred way of making the invention work. You must disclose any special instruments or techniques that have been or are currently being developed and indicate which method works best.
Tips for Crafting a Description
It’s important to keep in mind that patent laws do not consider anything not described in your patent filing as part of your invention.
Therefore, here are some tips on how to file a patent with a full description:
- Completely and clearly describe your invention so others would be able to understand its purpose and what it does.
- Include numerous, high quality patent drawings to support your patent description. Drawings are an ifree patent search way to ensure you have met the adequate description requirement.
- Do not file your patent application unless it is complete with a full description. You cannot amend the description after the filing date unless you file a new application. This means if you filed a provisional patent to establish an early filing date, that date would be null and void with the new filing.
Rely on Expert Help
It’s essential to write a comprehensive description for two critical reasons:
- The examination for patentability of your invention proceeds solely on the written description.
- The description is the major element used to resolve questions of patent infringement.
Unfortunately, most people do not know how to file a patent with a bulletproof description, which is why the number of patent lawsuits is on the rise. Hiring a patent attorney or using a patent services firm will ensure a well-written description.
At Lonestar Patent Services, writing rock solid descriptions for your patent application is part of our 12-step process of turning your ideas into fully developed products. Our U.S. registered patent attorneys are certified in crafting patent descriptions that meet patent law requirements and guard against patent infringement.
To learn more, contact us today to get started turning your idea into a formidable product.