Edmonton, Alberta Patent Lawyers

If you read our previous post, then you read over some of the advantages of getting a patent versus keeping it as a trade secret.

If you did decide that filing a patent is for you, then you will need to find a quality patent attorney to help you through the process.  Before you make the final decision on this, there is a few key things you should consider.

Ensure the lawyer is well-practiced in the patent field of law.  Just because they’ve been a lawyer for 20 years is actually not very relevant, 5 years practicing in patent law is more useful than 25 in another field, since the laws vary so wildly and are so complex in each individual field.  Patent law in particular is incredibly complex, so make sure you’re getting a patent lawyer that knows exactly what they are doing.

Edmonton is a city with a population of over 1 million within it’s metro, so you will have lots of options for patent lawyers in Edmonton.  Take your time to find the right lawyer, and use all the available resources to review your decision and make sure it’s the right one.

After you have decided on which lawyer you will go with, start by booking a one-hour consultation.  Usually, a one-hour consultation with the right lawyer will be enough for them to give you some great info.  In particular, they should be able to determine whether your claim has a real chance, or how rigorous the process will be.

From there on, you can either decide to move forward and try to claim a patent, or whether you will drop your pursuit due to failing to meet one of the qualifications.

If you want further information before you get too serious with your application, the visit the Canadian guide on patent applications directly from the government here.

I’ve also included this video below, to give you a little deeper look on the specific costs associated with filing a patent.


 

Why You Need to Patent Your Inventions

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Are you an inventor or innovator?

You may no even know it yet, but you probably are.  Anyone that can come up with a idea, concept, or process can be an inventor or innovator.  Although your idea does have to meet a few qualifications, it can potentially be a very valuable idea.  Although patenting in Canada is not a super-easy process (or cheap for that matter), it can be a worthwhile one.

The Difference Between a Patent and No Patent

This is a surprisingly simple question to answer, bu it doesn’t get asked enough.  Okay, you’ve come up with an idea.  Let’s pretend it meets all qualifications for it to be eligible for a patent.  What now?

Well, at this point you can contact a patent lawyer and start the process.  The process could take upwards of 1 year, and $10,000 to complete, so not exactly painless.  Most people however, simply say “Well I just won’t tell anyone!” or “What’s the point then?”.  These people don’t understand the essential elements of patent law and it’s advantages.

If you did decide to keep it secret but no patent it, then you would have what is termed a “trade secret”.  Trade secrets are actually quite common, Coca-Cola’s recipe is probably the most famous example of a trade secret.  However, a trade secret lacks some of the protections that a patent does offer.

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If you choose not to patent, and another person independently come up with the same or similar invention, then you are longer the sole holder of the secret.  This other person has the same rights to it as you do, even though you came up with it first.  If that person chooses to publish what they have independently discovered, then you probably have nothing of value anymore.

The advantage of trade secrets is you don’t have to disclose anything, where as the patent process does force you into disclosure of many things.  Of course, to keep a trade secret is also free and easy, so there’s always that.

With this being the main and key difference between a trade secret and patent, it is up to you to decide which is more advantageous for you, or if someone else might conceivably strip your idea of it’s value.