Oftentimes the concept of obtaining a patent is associated with concrete inventions an inventor creates.
A business method patent is a different kind of patent that is accessible from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). This sort of patent typically patents a business method that is used alongside with technology, subsequently developing a new method of doing business.
These patents can usually be acquired for any type of business method, although they often are applied to automated and e-commerce business, as long as you can prove the claimed method offers a pertinent technical effect. If you are a business owner, or entrepreneur, it is important that you understand this concept – in this article, we will discuss a few things every business should know about method patents.
1. The Difference Between a Business Method Patent and a Process Patent
As previously mentioned, patents often refer to the legal protection of physical inventions. These types of patents are commonly designated as process patents. On the other hand, a business method patent protects a particular business method you have developed, which often involves a specific type of software or technology. The business method patent, therefore, protects the very core of a business.
2. How Can a Business Benefit from Business Method Patent?
- A business method patent provides you and your business with legal protection for investments into creating new and original business models
- It stops opponents from copying your ideas without authorization or without paying for the idea
- Finally, it provides the patent holder the opportunity to sue for violation and to attain court-ordered bans where applicable. Claims of lack of knowledge of a patent’s existence is not a justification if you are legally charged with infringing.
3. Business Methods You Can Patent
In order to patent a business method, the idea you have created must be novel and not obvious and has to be already put in practice – You will not be able to patent an idea that has not yet been used. Legally, the expectation of patentability for a business method is that the creation must be a method that generates a useful, concrete, and tangible result. Additionally, the business method must involve some type of specific technology, hardware, or tools. Therefore, the patent is about the combination of the technology element with a method or way of doing business that is unique and unlike anything else that is already in use.
4. How to Apply for a Business Method Patent
If you develop a new idea of working for your business, it is essential that you apply for a business method patent. In order to do this, you are required to complete an application for a utility patent—the business method patent is a subcategory of utility patents—which will comprise specifics about your business method. When applying for a business method patent, your narrative of the system you have invented, and explanation of the way it interacts with specific technology, should be clear.
The patent claim will be examined fully under a specialised review process, which might prompt further questions regarding your invention and business method that you must be prepared to answer. The full process of patenting a business method can be long and overwhelming, as it may take around three years to receive confirmation of a patent.
5. Seek Legal Support
To Patent Your Business Method
There are many complexities and legalities associated with obtaining a business method patent. For this reason, and to ensure that you understand what you are getting yourself involved with and to ensure you are fully protecting your business and ideas, it is essential that you seek counsel from a legal representative with expertise in business method patents.
Patent lawyers and registered trade mark legal representatives are legally qualified and regulated advisors. They are able to offer dedicated services required to get the best out of your intellectual property. It is possible to manage this without the support of an attorney, however you may face serious challenges along the way that you may not be equipped to deal with.
To Represent You in Court
Something you must note, is that there may still be people who will use your idea and method without your permission – whether intentionally or not, but as mentioned above, ignorance cannot be used as defence in legal patent cases. In cases such as this, being represented by a lawyer will prove highly beneficial. The experts from https://revisionlegal.com/patent-attorneys/ provide individuals with advice on patents and legalities associated with this process as well as with tailored support with registering for a patent. Moreover, they can offer legal representation and guidance should you find yourself in court fighting for patent infringement.
Law dealing with intellectual property is complicated and necessitates substantial knowledge and skill to negotiate well. If you face a situation where your appreciated business assets are at risk, it is best to take precautions to prevent major losses.
Protecting your ideas and unique business method is vital so that you can benefit from this use and prevent others from using your idea. Ensure you research this concept well so you know what it entails, and seek legal support for further guidance should you need it.