Any scientist would be proud of his accomplishment, of a new invention or product. As a budding inventor with a completed piece of work, the first thing that would come to your mind is to have it patented, for the credit of the idea to be officially yours. Even in earlier days, famous inventors and scientists alike competed to have their inventions and discoveries patented. But the full patent would be truly expensive so the least you can do is get a provisional patent. Here are some things that you must have to be able to register your invention to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
- Specification. The first step is for you to give the specifics of your invention, of the procedures you have taken. To be able to do this, you should have a logbook of all the steps you have taken in making your invention. The logbook should contain the date, the process you have accomplished for that day, and should be signed by you and your co-inventor, if you have one. If you have not made a logbook, it would be best to write down the procedures you have done in general and the justification of doing such a procedure. Instead of having specific dates for each, just have a starting date and end date.
- Illustrations. If during the making of your invention you have taken pictures or have made sketches to illustrate the theory you have used or the procedure you are testing, you should attach it to your registration papers. Sometimes it is better to have your illustrations labeled, dated and signed on the date it was made for the patent officers to better see the connection of the ideas that you have written in the logbook.
- Sample model. If you are already able to make a duplicate of your invention that you can send or show at the patent office, do so. It will help them assess if your invention is worth a provisional patent.
- Fee and filing date. After you have sent your specifications and illustrations or drawings and have gotten an approval from the patent officer, they will give you an estimated amount of how much you will pay. Along with this estimate, they will give you the date of when you should accomplish your payments and other documents that they will require you to bring.
- Oath. After filing everything, you will be asked to recite an oath that says that you are truly the inventor of the item to be patented and that as far as you know the idea is truly yours. If you have a co-inventor, both of you will take the oath. If your co-inventor cannot be present at the said date, you can take the oath for him.
A provisional patent will last for one year, so you have time before the application for non-provisional patent. For further information about provisional patenting, please visit the USPTO website and read the patent laws listed at http://www.uspto.gov/web/offices/pac/mpep/consolidated_laws.pdf Good luck!