Vic Lin

PCT Bypass: Another way to enter US?

Is national stage the only way a PCT application can enter the US? No, an alternative option to enter the US from a PCT application is called a bypass application. A bypass application is filed as a US continuing application claiming domestic priority to the PCT application as if it were a US parent nonprovisional […]

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Patent drawings: What you need to know

What is the purpose of utility patent drawings? We all (should) know that the figures, i.e., patent drawings, do not define the claimed invention in a utility patent. The claims do. So what is the purpose of drawings in a utility patent? Drawings are an important component of the overall disclosure in a patent. Features […]

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What a USPTO patent examiner really thinks

Thinking like a patent examiner We are privileged to have a former USPTO patent examiner, Lyman Smith, as Of Counsel patent attorney to our firm. The following insightful answers come from Lyman’s familiarity with the inner system of the US Patent Office. Keep in mind we are talking about utility nonprovisional patent applications, and not […]

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What are differences between patents and trademarks?

How are patents and trademarks different? The goal of this article is to provide a helpful summary of differences between patents and trademarks that will actually help you in making good business decisions. This is not an exhaustive list of differences. Instead, we will focus on key distinguishing features of each IP right. My hope […]

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Can you trademark before launching product?

What comes first: filing trademark or launching product? The US trademark registration system is different from the rest of the world. With a few exceptions, one generally must use the mark in connection with goods or services in US commerce in order to obtain a federal trademark registration from the USPTO. Should business owners first […]

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What is a PCT patent search of prior art?

Will you get a prior art search in your PCT patent application? Yes, a prior art patent search is typically made in each PCT application. The results of this PCT international search are summarized in an initial document called an International Search Report (ISR). This first prior art search, also known as the “main international […]

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Are many goods or services in a US trademark application OK?

Can you have too many goods or services in a US trademark application? Most foreign countries do not require use of the trademark for registration. So it is common to find a high number of goods or services in Madrid trademark applications that originate outside the US. The lack of a use requirement in foreign […]

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Can others file the same patent in a different country?

Same patent by others in different country? If an earlier applicant obtains a patent first in their own country, can others subsequently patent the same invention in a different country? The simple answer “should” be no. The reality, however, is more complicated. What happens in the real patent world does not always follow what should […]

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Live vs. dead trademark: What are the differences?

Dead or live marks on USPTO trademark database Anyone can search trademarks on the USPTO’s Trademark Electronic Search System, or TESS for short. The status of each trademark filing on TESS will be identified as either live or dead. Understanding the live or dead status of the trademarks on TESS will help formulate an effective […]

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What are the new trademark filing rules for 2020?

What are the new USPTO trademark filing rules in 2020? Starting Feb. 15, 2020, certain mandatory requirements for trademark filings will take effect. These changes to trademark filing rules pertain mostly to communications with the USPTO and specimens of use. The new trademark filing rules will require nearly all new trademark applications to be filed […]

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