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   Patent Agent Interview - Q/A
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rolando_g
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Posts: 4
Patent Agent Interview - Q/A
« on: Apr 7th, 2006, 12:54pm »
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I'm trying to get a good feel of the questions that may be asked during the interview by the panel of attorneys.  Here's a compilation of what I have so far.  Please add more if you (Active Patent Agent) have experienced other questions that were directed for the Agent/Scientist job.
 
Questions to be received:
 
1. Why are you interested in Patent Law?
2. Why do you want to work for this firm?
3. Do you have any drafting experience?
4. Do you know if you want to focus on prosecution or litigation?
 
Questions to ask:
 
1. How would you train the new agent? specific training or project-to-project or mentored by attorney??
2. Will the job consist of writing patents (preparation) or getting them through the USPTO (prosecution) or both?
3. What is the predetermined amount of time to sit through the patent bar exam? (applies for those who are not licensed)
 
Are there any other questions worth asking??
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justanagent
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Re: Patent Agent Interview - Q/A
« Reply #1 on: Apr 7th, 2006, 1:54pm »
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Questions for you to ask:
 
Will my work be reviewed by associates or partners?
 
Will there be any minimum level of supervisory experience among those who review my work?
 
Will I be training my supervisors to supervise?
 
Will I look bad as my newly minted supervisors who only recently escaped micro-management themselves struggle to learn to micro-manage me?
 
When I'm told to do pointless things in the most inefficient manners possible ... who will be held accountable for the gross inefficiencies of the firm?
 
How do I face the ethical challenges when my supervisor instructs me to suppress the most relevant art in a patent application and thereby fail in the duty to disclose information?
 
When my supervisor asks me to join him in starting his own firm, and then cuts me off from billable work for expressing thoughts of loyalty to my current employer, will I still get fired?
 
When my supervisor asks me to join him in starting his own firm, and I express and interest, and then the firm finds out because everybody knows everybody and you're all a bunch of snakes with your tails intertwined, will I still get fired?
 
When partners tell me to do opposite things on the same project, what should I do?
 
When partners go to lunch smiling together, do they ever talk about the wars they create in the staff of the firm with their opposing policies?
 
When my secretary never helps me because a partner keeps him/her busy, and firm policy prevents me from accomplishing secretarial tasks myself, will I still get fired?
 
If attorneys come and go like the seasons here ... why is it called a "firm?"
Might it more appropriately called a "torrent?"
 
Why am I here?
 
Can I go now?
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Isaac
Senior Member
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Posts: 3472
Re: Patent Agent Interview - Q/A
« Reply #2 on: Apr 7th, 2006, 4:38pm »
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on Apr 7th, 2006, 12:54pm, rolando_g wrote:
I'm trying to get a good feel of the questions that may be asked during the interview by the panel of attorneys.  Here's a compilation of what I have so far.  Please add more if you (Active Patent Agent) have experienced other questions that were directed for the Agent/Scientist job.
 
Questions to be received:
 
1. Why are you interested in Patent Law?
2. Why do you want to work for this firm?
3. Do you have any drafting experience?
4. Do you know if you want to focus on prosecution or litigation?
 
Questions to ask:
 
1. How would you train the new agent? specific training or project-to-project or mentored by attorney??
2. Will the job consist of writing patents (preparation) or getting them through the USPTO (prosecution) or both?
3. What is the predetermined amount of time to sit through the patent bar exam? (applies for those who are not licensed)
 
Are there any other questions worth asking??

 
When asking about the training program, I'd suggest keeping your question open ended rather than suggestive.   Don't imply a difficulty with OJT versus formal training.   If you are uncomfortable with the method of training, make sure the decision not to take the job is in your hands.
 
It's okay to ask how you will be evaluated, and hopefully the answer will have enough detail to answer some of the questions in justanagent's tongue in check post.
 
I would not ask benefit related questions of anyone except an HR person.
 
Generally speaking, interviews concerning patent positions are consist mostly (maybe 85%) of questions that might be asked at an interview for any professional position at a comparable sized organization.
« Last Edit: Apr 7th, 2006, 8:03pm by Isaac » IP Logged

Isaac
Toxic Agent
Guest
Re: Patent Agent Interview - Q/A
« Reply #3 on: Apr 8th, 2006, 4:28pm »
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on Apr 7th, 2006, 1:54pm, justanagent wrote:
Questions for you to ask:
 
Will my work be reviewed by associates or partners?
 
Will there be any minimum level of supervisory experience among those who review my work?
 
Will I be training my supervisors to supervise?
 
Will I look bad as my newly minted supervisors who only recently escaped micro-management themselves struggle to learn to micro-manage me?
 
When I'm told to do pointless things in the most inefficient manners possible ... who will be held accountable for the gross inefficiencies of the firm?
 
How do I face the ethical challenges when my supervisor instructs me to suppress the most relevant art in a patent application and thereby fail in the duty to disclose information?
 
When my supervisor asks me to join him in starting his own firm, and then cuts me off from billable work for expressing thoughts of loyalty to my current employer, will I still get fired?
 
When my supervisor asks me to join him in starting his own firm, and I express and interest, and then the firm finds out because everybody knows everybody and you're all a bunch of snakes with your tails intertwined, will I still get fired?
 
When partners tell me to do opposite things on the same project, what should I do?
 
When partners go to lunch smiling together, do they ever talk about the wars they create in the staff of the firm with their opposing policies?
 
When my secretary never helps me because a partner keeps him/her busy, and firm policy prevents me from accomplishing secretarial tasks myself, will I still get fired?
 
If attorneys come and go like the seasons here ... why is it called a "firm?"
Might it more appropriately called a "torrent?"
 
Why am I here?
 
Can I go now?

 
 
All true.   But I get the feeling that associates have it no better.... except of course for their salaries.   Wink
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