How Can I Patent an Idea?
I Have an Idea but How Can I Protect It
The problem with just having an idea is that you can't simply "own" an idea. Patents protect inventions, copyrights protect creative type of work, trademarks protect commercial phrases and images. Nothing legally protects an idea by itself. You don't own it. So, how do you present your idea without someone stealing it and or telling someone else about it.
You could ask anyone that you decide to tell prior to spilling your beans that they sign a confidentiality agreement and on a personal level, I would, but if you plan on presenting it to a company or marketing group, don’t expect them to sign it. Bottom line, companies that may be interested in your idea may already be considering something very similar and they could wind up blocking their own efforts to proceed with their own idea since it was close to yours.
Now, that being said, you can Protect Your Idea with a Provisional Patent. . The U.S. Government has recognized that people need an economical means of filing for patents and protecting their ideas even if the final finished product has yet to be completed. This type of patent, a provisional patent, qualifies for a Patent Pending status, so that you are protected by having your idea being dated and being considered for a more permanent patent while you continue to pursue your efforts to get it to market.
You can read the basic background of a provisional patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and see if this explains things in detail for you.
Monday, January 7, 2013
First of all, you must lay claim to your idea, in the form of a provisional patent. Once you have that secured, you have it documented that you in fact own the idea, and now you can proceed to sell your idea.
Some people want to sell their ideas, some want to ride the entire process out and bring their idea to full development. So, you must decide what you plan to do with your newly owned idea.
If you decide that you don't want to go through the hoops of developing the idea into a tangible product, there are people who buy ideas. But, before you go off half cocked and expect to make millions off of your idea that way, understand that you have basically take absolutely no risk in this venture and you can't expect to cash out big with an unproven product.
Idea Buyers are smart people or they wouldn't have the money to buy yours. They know that ideas to finish product takes time, investment, research, and development. And all of that must take place before they can expect to see a return on their investment.
Yo may want to sell your idea with a little more effort on developing your product and giving it some exposure first. Idea buyers are more likely to pay you more for your idea if it has been marketed to some degree on your part. This allows them to see how the public is reacting to your idea and then they can determine if they can apply their expertise in bringing it to full market exposure.