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Patent

Patent

What is a 'Patent'

A patent is a government license that gives the holder exclusive rights to a process, design or new invention for a designated period of time. Applications for patents are usually handled by a government agency. In the United States, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office handles application and documentation.

Explaining 'Patent'

Most patents are valid for 20 years in America. By granting the right to produce a new product without fear of competition, patents provide incentive for companies or individuals to continue developing innovative new products or services. As an example, pharmaceutical companies spend large sums on research and development, and patents are essential to earning a profit.

How to Apply for a Patent

Before making a formal application, you should research the Patent & Trademark Office's database to see if another person has claimed a patent similar to yours. Your invention must be different from or an improvement upon a previous design to be considered for a patent. Maintain careful records of the design process and the steps you took to create your invention. Enforcing the patent is up to the person or entity that applied for the patent.

Patent Statistics

In 2016, the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office received more than 629,000 applications for patents. The agency granted nearly 326,000 of those applications. Most of the grants, or more than 298,000, were for utility patents.


Further Reading

The role of patents and licenses in securing external finance for innovationThe role of patents and licenses in securing external finance for innovation
books.google.com [PDF]
… finance patents, a legal scholar who had extensively written about business method patents (and been a … from the February 2000 issues of the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics … met the criteria for patentable subject matter under § 101 of the patent statute …

To be financed or not…-The role of patents for venture capital-financingTo be financed or not…-The role of patents for venture capital-financing
papers.ssrn.com [PDF]
… finance patents, a legal scholar who had extensively written about business method patents (and been a … from the February 2000 issues of the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics … met the criteria for patentable subject matter under § 101 of the patent statute …

Patents, thickets and the financing of early‐stage firms: evidence from the software industryPatents, thickets and the financing of early‐stage firms: evidence from the software industry
onlinelibrary.wiley.com [PDF]
… finance patents, a legal scholar who had extensively written about business method patents (and been a … from the February 2000 issues of the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics … met the criteria for patentable subject matter under § 101 of the patent statute …

The use and misuse of patent data: Issues for corporate finance and beyondThe use and misuse of patent data: Issues for corporate finance and beyond
www.nber.org [PDF]
… finance patents, a legal scholar who had extensively written about business method patents (and been a … from the February 2000 issues of the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics … met the criteria for patentable subject matter under § 101 of the patent statute …

Commercialization of patents and external financing during the R&D phaseCommercialization of patents and external financing during the R&D phase
www.sciencedirect.com [PDF]
… finance patents, a legal scholar who had extensively written about business method patents (and been a … from the February 2000 issues of the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics … met the criteria for patentable subject matter under § 101 of the patent statute …

Do patents facilitate financing in the software industryDo patents facilitate financing in the software industry
heinonline.org [PDF]
… finance patents, a legal scholar who had extensively written about business method patents (and been a … from the February 2000 issues of the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics … met the criteria for patentable subject matter under § 101 of the patent statute …

Patents as quality signals? The implications for financing constraints on R&DPatents as quality signals? The implications for financing constraints on R&D
www.tandfonline.com [PDF]
… finance patents, a legal scholar who had extensively written about business method patents (and been a … from the February 2000 issues of the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics … met the criteria for patentable subject matter under § 101 of the patent statute …

Staging of venture financing, investor opportunism and patent lawStaging of venture financing, investor opportunism and patent law
onlinelibrary.wiley.com [PDF]
… finance patents, a legal scholar who had extensively written about business method patents (and been a … from the February 2000 issues of the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics … met the criteria for patentable subject matter under § 101 of the patent statute …

Patents as signals for startup financingPatents as signals for startup financing
onlinelibrary.wiley.com [PDF]
… finance patents, a legal scholar who had extensively written about business method patents (and been a … from the February 2000 issues of the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial Economics … met the criteria for patentable subject matter under § 101 of the patent statute …


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