Patents grant the exclusive right to make, use, and sell an invention. This is an extremely valuable right, as a patented invention can only be made and sold in the United States with the permission of the patent owner. A patent can literally be worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Of course, a patent can only be worth that much if i) the invention itself is worth many times that amount, and ii) the patent is "good" enough to cover variations of the invention and withstand validity challenges.
In addition to the value of a , and an inventor can gain this monopoly-like right only by filing a patent application. In addition, even before a patent is granted, a patent application gives you the right to claim patent pending status, which is useful in marketing an invention and selling your product or company to investors.
What makes patents so expensive?
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Guidance on Filing A Patent Application
These pages provide guidance on filing a patent application with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The patent filing overview page gives a general summary of the guidance available in this section.
What is a patent application?
What rights are created by a patent?
What if you cannot afford to enforce your patent rights?
What are the benefits of patent pending status?
What makes patent application so expensive?
What is the cost breakdown of a patent application?
What is the cost of a design patent application?
Can't I get a cheaper patent somewhere else?
How to identify your invention (not my proposed product)?
How to value your invention
Should you trust invention submission companies?
What difference do the "first to file" laws make?
What are the deadlines for filing a patent application?
Do you need to create a working model of your invention?
What is a patentability search?
How can searches avoid wasteful patent applications?
How can searches improve a patent applications?
When is a search unnecessary (or even unhelpful)?
What is a provisional application?
Do provisional applications save money?
What are the benefits of a provisional application?
Can I file a provisional application without an attorney?