Yes, our law firm takes credit card payments for initial retainers
While the legal industry has been slow to adapt, Innovation Capital Law Group tries to stay in tune with the needs of our clients by adopting flat rate legal fees and flexible payment options. We understand that paying a legal retainer in the amount of a few thousand dollars can be challenging for startups and small businesses. Our law firm makes it easier for our clients to protect their IP by accepting credit card payments for initial retainers.
Keep in mind that an initial retainer may or may not be the total cost of your IP matter. After the initial filing of your trademark or patent application, there may be additional costs in the ongoing prosecution of your application (i.e., back-and-forth correspondences with the USPTO).
What additional costs and payment options should be expected after the initial IP filing?
Trademark applications typically involve a shorter and less expensive process towards completion than patent applications. For a trademark application based on actual use in commerce or a foreign registration, it may be possible to flat rate the entire process from initial filing to registration assuming the USPTO does not issue a refusal.
On the other hand, patent applications involve greater uncertainty, longer pendency and higher costs. This is especially true of utility patent applications which get rejected with high frequency unlike design patent applications. There is some relief for patent applicants. The cost of responding to a patent rejection (called an Office Action) is typically a fraction of the initial filing cost of drafting a utility non-provisional patent application.
Whenever we report a patent Office Action, we can provide flat rate estimates for analyzing the rejections and for preparing an appropriate response. If we believe an Examiner Interview would be quite helpful, we can also provide a flat rate estimate for conducting the interview and summarizing the results in writing.
What flexible payment plans are offered by our firm?
Our firm also offers flexible payment plans that are interest-free as long as each installment is timely paid, usually on a monthly basis. This flexibility allows us to get to work immediately on preparing patent and trademark applications that are of utmost importance to the client. One option we often consider involves an upfront payment for half of the cost of the project, while the remaining half can be paid in equal installments over the course of several months (e.g., 5-10 months), depending upon the cash flow and budgetary constraints of the particular client.
For example, suppose we quote the initial filing estimate of a utility non-provisional patent application at $9,800, including a flat rate attorney’s fee of $8,500 and costs of approximately $1,300 (i.e., USPTO and illustrator fees). One suggested payment option would involve an upfront payment of $4,900 for half the cost of the project. The remaining balance of $4,900 can be spread out in equal monthly installments of $490 over a 10-month period. No interest would be charged as long as each monthly installment is timely paid.
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