Design Patent Searches

Design Patent Searches

During the application examination process, a search of prior patents and published applications ("the prior art") is conducted by the USPTO to determine whether your design is truly novel. There are of course advantages to having a search conducted before or while preparing your application. This will allow you to determine if someone else has already patented your design.

Also, if you've had a search conducted, you can be prepared for prior art which the USPTO may bring up during examination. You can conduct a search for prior art yourself or by using a professional search service, such as LegalZoom. LegalZoom's comprehensive patent search service covers the relevant prior art in your field of invention.

Design patent applications require far less description than utility patent applications. The USPTO considers drawings to be the best "description" of a design. That's why it is relatively difficult to conduct a design patent search using keywords as you would for a utility patent search. However, a LegalZoom design patent search can help you cover the vast amount of existing patented designs that may be relevant to your application.

 
  • Comparing Design Patents to Copyrights and Trademarks
    Most people understand that it's important to take steps to protect their creative design. The confusing part can be figuring out what type(s) of intellectual property protection are needed. Each type of protection covers certain subject matter and offers specific rights to its owner. Thus, it's...
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  • Comparing Design Patents and Utility Patents
    You've finally created a really unique but practical chair - something that would look perfect in the pages of Architectural Digest. You're also savvy enough to realize you should look into protective legal steps before unveiling it to the public (and rival designers). So you'll just apply for a...
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  • Definition of a Design Patent
    A design patent is a form of intellectual property protection which allows an inventor to protect the original shape or surface ornamentation of a useful manufactured article. This applies to any unique form or otherwise perceivable design features of an object - for instance, a chair, table, hand...
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  • Filing Requirements for Design Patents
    There are several components to a design patent application, though the bulk of the preparation time will typically center on the drawings section. The main elements are:
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  • Design Patent Searches
    http://www.legalzoom.com/patent-search/patent-search-overview.htmlDuring the application examination process, a search of prior patents and published applications ("the prior art") is conducted by the USPTO to determine whether your design is truly novel. There are of course advantages to having a...
    read more
  • Introduction to Design Patents
    For years you've been tinkering with the objects in your house to give them more pizzazz. The kitchen clock has been cleverly reshaped to look like a cup of coffee. You've refitted your lamps with shades funky enough to match the retro theme of a room. Even the pet's food bowls have had a serious...
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