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I have an Invention ... Now What?
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   Looking for Investors, patent attorneys or agents
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   Author  Topic: Looking for Investors, patent attorneys or agents  (Read 1721 times)


Posts: 3
Looking for Investors, patent attorneys or agents
« on: Dec 5th, 2007, 8:11am »
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I have a great invention that I created 7 years ago !
I finally decided to do something with it after all this time. I actually have been using it this past 7 years and am really amazed on how it works. I have had a provisional patent on this item now for about a month now, but I understand once it has been disclosed to the public that it starts your year you have to get a utility patent. If thats the case I have 8 months left !
Anyway I decided to make this product on my own so I bent, welded and painted my invention. It looks factory made. I decided to sell some on eBay and they went so fast I couldn't make enough to keep up with the demand ! I also put them in 3 local bait shops and I can't keep enough on the shelves. I have people asking for them ! I am just not set up to keep up with the demand at this time and I am very fustrated cause I know if I got it to the right company it would make everyone tons of money ! Unfortunately, every company I have contacted will not even give me the time of day to look at my invention unless I already have a patent on the item and in a way I can understand this !
I have personally searched the USPTO patents and cannot find anything like this ! I have done searches on search engines, eBay and everywhere I can think of and cannot find anything like what I have ! This has all been done in the last 6 years and still nothing like this shows up !
It cost me around $4.00 to make this item and it sells like hot cakes at $29.95. There are 100's of different versions of this item on the market, but I have failed to find one that can come close to competing with mine ! Actually this beats the competition hands down !
Probably a mistake I made was disclosing it to the public before trying to keep it a secret and find an investor interested in becoming partners on the invention. Well ! Its to late now as far as it being disclosed ! You live and learn huh !
Anyway, I am not giving up ! I still have 8 months to file for a utility patent ! The problem I am having is that I don't have the money at this time to go forward with this ! If I have enough time to make enough of these I might save enough money in the next 8 months to get my patent ! I really don't want to take the chance so I am looking for someone that is interested in making alot of money and knows how to go through the right channels to get it on the market !
I would be interested in splitting the royalties on this item and even letting that person own the patent on this item if an agreement could be met between us !
If anyone is interested I would have to have them sign a non disclosure agreement even though it has been disclosed ! All I am doing is trying to cover myself somewhat even though it has been disclosed to the public ! I would also have to have an agreement that any investors etc...I disclose this to will sign an agreement never to disclose or patent this idea in the event I fail to get a patent in the required amount of time.
I hope to hear from serious investors only !
I have pictures, prototypes and a plan if interested I can email pictures, and mail prototype !
Hope to hear back from someone soon cause time is wasting !
Thanks for your time.
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Re: Looking for Investors, patent attorneys or age
« Reply #1 on: Dec 5th, 2007, 1:31pm »
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Hi Jeff,
If you had taken steps to keep your invention secret, it may still be patentable (and hopefully it is truly novel).  A quick note that I'm sure someone else will point out if I don't, you don't have a provisional patent on it.  If anything, you have simply filed a provisional patent application and it has been received by the USPTO.  
I know that seems inconsequential, but the underlying point is that nobody at the USPTO has or will examine your provisional application.  
After public disclosure, you actually have a year to file any patent application - provisional included.  So you could still have another 11 months to file a full fledged non provisional.  However, if your provisional application does not meet the same "enabling" requirements any non provisional patent must meet, your provisional application will be rendered useless as if it were never filed.
So, you still may want to file within twelve months of disclosure in order to minimize risk.  Losing a filing date is one thing, losing the right to a patent is another.
Anyways, it sounds as if you have a marketable product, thats good stuff.  There are companies out there that should be willing to speak with you without an issued patent, too, although using NDA's may be a good idea for you without an issued patent.  The best thing you could probably do right now is to continue to build up sales and press (brand yourself).  More documented success will make your invention more attractive to potential licensees, and worst case it can give yourself something to build on if you eventually decide to go into business for yourself full fledged.
Good luck, and remember its not all about patentability, patentability is just one more thing that affects marketability.
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Bill Richards
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Re: Looking for Investors, patent attorneys or age
« Reply #2 on: Dec 6th, 2007, 4:09am »
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on Dec 5th, 2007, 8:11am, concretecowboy_09 wrote:
I actually have been using it this past 7 years and am really amazed on how it works.

How have you been using it?  In a public sense, where others are around?  Depending upon the circumstances, a "public use" can start the one-year clock ticking just like the "offer for sale".
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William B. Richards, P.E.
The Richards Law Firm
Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights
Re: Looking for Investors, patent attorneys or age
« Reply #3 on: Dec 6th, 2007, 10:56am »
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As has already been suggested, there's a chance, depending on the facts, that your "use" in the past 7 years prevents you from acquiring patent rights to your invention.
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