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Utility Patents FAQs

Are there guidelines for drawings that are included with utility patent applications?

The USPTO has very specific rules governing the appearance of technical drawings accompanying patent applications. Generally, the USPTO will require drawings in black ink. Color drawings are permitted only if necessitated by the invention and are typically not permitted with electronic filings.

Photographs are generally not considered an acceptable way to illustrate an invention. A photograph may only be used if drawings are insufficient, as in the case of molecular structures, for example.