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Provisional Application for Patent

File a Provisional Application for Patent - Establish Your Priority Filing Date with the USPTO

A provisional application for patent establishes your priority filing date with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and lets you immediately start labeling your invention "patent pending."

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Pricing starts at $199 + filing fee

How it works

For a more detailed view of our process, click here.

Complete our simple online questionnaire

1. Complete our simple online questionnaire

Complete our simple questionnaire. If you need technical assistance at any time, our customer care specialists are available to help.

We conduct a Peace of Mind Review™

2. We conduct a Peace of Mind Review™

Your Application is Created and Reviewed Our LegalZip® system creates your Provisional Application for Patent. For your convenience, we can even create your technical drawings and perform a patent search. As an option, you can have your application reviewed by a patent professional.

We electronically file your application with the USPTO

3. We electronically file your application with the USPTO

Complete the Provisional Application for Patent questionnaire. If you need technical assistance at any time, our customer care specialists are available to help.

Copyright, trademark and patent: what's the difference?

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Provisional Patent Application


+ filing fee


Completion of provisional application for patent

Digitizing and color adjustment of your technical drawings

Professional review (optional), which includes drafting one independent claim and more

Ask away. We have answers.

Common questions

How long does a design patent last?
The term of a design patent is 14 years, beginning on the date the patent is granted. This is in contrast to a utility patent term, which typically lasts 20 years and is measured from the application priority filing date. Design patents are not renewable and require no maintenance fees.
How long will it take to prepare my design patent application?
The process of preparing the application and technical drawings generally takes 2-3 weeks. Once the application is filed, you may legally label your design "patent pending" for the period that your application is awaiting approval.
What are the rights of a copyright holder?
The owner of a copyright has the exclusive right to do and to authorize others to do the following:
  • Reproduce the work
  • Prepare derivative works based on the work
  • Distribute copies of the work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, such as by rental, lease or lending
  • Perform the work publicly. This applies to literary, musical, dramatic and choreographic works, pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works
  • Display the copyrighted work publicly. This applies to literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and pictorial, graphic or sculptural works, including the individual images of a motion picture or other audiovisual work
What works are protected by copyright?
Copyright protects "original works of authorship" that are fixed in a tangible form including the following:
  • Literary works
  • Musical works, including any accompanying words
  • Dramatic works, including any accompanying music
  • Pantomimes and choreographic works
  • Pictorial, graphic and sculptural works
  • Motion pictures and other audiovisual works
  • Sound recordings
  • Architectural works
These categories should be viewed broadly. For example, computer code and many "compilations" may be registered as "literary works." Maps and architectural plans may be registered as "pictorial, graphic and sculptural works."
Does copyright protect a name, title, slogan, logo or idea?
Copyright doesn't protect names, titles, slogans or short phrases. In some cases, these things may be protected as trademarks. We can assist you in registering a trademark. However, copyright protection may be appropriate for logo art work that contains sufficient creativity. In some circumstances, a logo may receive both copyright and trademark protection.

Copyright doesn't protect ideas, concepts, systems or methods of doing something. You may express your ideas in writing or drawings and claim copyright in your expression. Be aware that a copyright won't protect the idea itself as revealed in your written or artistic work. Put simply: copyright protects expressions, not ideas.

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Start a Provisional Application for Patent Online with LegalZoom

Protect your invention by filing for a patent through LegalZoom. When you file for a patent through LegalZoom that's provisional, we will complete your provisional application for patent, digitize and adjust color of your technical drawings, and review your application for accuracy and completeness. A provisional application for patent can be used to hold your spot in line at the patent office for a new invention, which can be extremely important if you are competing with other inventors. Once you file your application for patent, you will also have the right to use the term "Patent Pending" in connection with your invention, which offers further protection. LegalZoom's online patent filing process was developed by experienced attorneys and offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee. We can help you get started with your patent application. Just answer a few simple questions and we will review your application for completeness and consistency then file it electronically with the USPTO.