Patent Laws Have Changed – What you need to know

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Patent Laws Have Changed What you need to know

According to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, there were over 576,000 patents filed in 2012. Those patents are all scrutinized based on who it is that can prove the idea was theirs first. But as of this week, that old system of awarding the patent to someone changed. Anyone who has an idea worth filing a patent for will need to know about the new changes if he or she wants to protect the idea.

Whether you are in the Rocklin or Sacramento area or beyond, protecting your idea with a patent is a smart move. It always has been, but the laws have changed, which will impact how people go about getting their ideas patented. While President Obama signed the new laws 18 months ago, they took effect this week.

The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act is considered the most significant patent laws to be passed since 1952. What the act does is make it where the first person who files for a patent is going to get priority, rather than the prior way, where the focus was on who could prove the idea was theirs first. This change is going impact people filing patents by:

  • Speeding up the entire patent process. While the new laws bring ours in line with that of the rest of the world, it is also supposed to expedite the patent process.
  • Making it crucial that as soon as someone has a good idea, they put in the patent for it. There is no longer room for holding onto the idea and just documenting how it was yours first.
  • Making it about who files first, not about who may have had the idea first. Keeping this in mind, if you have an idea, it is wise to guard it until you have filed for a patent. In other words, exercise caution about who you are sharing your idea with. 

The new patent law is a game changer that is going to end up awarding those who act quickly with the patents. Those who have an idea who want to get a patent will need to file right away if they want to protect their idea. Whether you have questions about how to file a patent to protect your ideas, or if you feel there has been an infringement, always speak with an attorney who handles patents. Those in Rocklin, Sacramento, and throughout the state of California need to protect their ideas. In today’s world you will need to act quickly in order to be successful at doing so!


The Law Offices of Terry L. Gilbeau provides personalized counsel to clients in a variety of business and personal matters, including creditors’ rights, debt collection, products liability and international transaction issues. His office is located in Rocklin, CA, just outside of Sacramento, CA, near Roseville, Lincoln, Auburn, in Placer County and can be reached at (916-626-5539) or email Terry at Click here for the firm website

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