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Becoming a Patent Agent/Lawyer
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   Market?
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Solidton
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Market?
« on: Jan 3rd, 2007, 12:57pm »
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Since there are nominally ~300,000 US patents filed each year, and if you assume that each patent prosecution on average costs about $10,000 (let me know if you think this is way off), this would indicate that the total market is only $3B/year.
 
Given that there are 33000 registered patent agents/attorneys this works out to be ~ $91K per registered person.
 
What else to patent attorneys/agents do to earn there salaries?
 
Feel free to educate me on better assumptions.
 
Thanks.
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tonyp
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Re: Market?
« Reply #1 on: Jan 3rd, 2007, 2:12pm »
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If even half that many agents/attorneys actually prosecute the vast majority of applications, I'd be surprised.  I know of a number of patent litigators who are registered, but spend very little time doing prosecution.
 
Also, I'd say $10k underestimates the total cost of prosecution - ballpark-accurate perhaps for preparation of the initial application, but each office action response is good for another 1.5-3k depending on the client and matter.  The overwhelming majority of cases I see require at least two responses.
 
Halving the number of active prosecutors and increasing average total prosecution fees per patent to $15k results in closer to $270k/prosecutor/year.
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Solidton
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Re: Market?
« Reply #2 on: Jan 3rd, 2007, 2:27pm »
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Thanks for your insights!
 
My guess is the number of patent applications is pretty flat year-over-year (flat demand).  But, if they number of registered agents/attorneys is growing (growing supply), doesn't this make for a poor situation for career opportunities?
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forest
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Re: Market?
« Reply #3 on: Jan 3rd, 2007, 2:56pm »
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I would think you'd have to consider all the money spent on patents that don't get registered (people still seek advice, etc on these) as well as other things such as litigation. Many patents are for many inventions taht bring in big big $$, and the cost to fight for them is correspondingly high.
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"Science is a wonderful thing if one does not have to earn one's living at it." ~Albert Einstein
Solidton
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Re: Market?
« Reply #4 on: Jan 3rd, 2007, 3:12pm »
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Good point.  But, I can't imagine that the amount of effort (and thus money) expended on unregistered patents to be substantial relative to the 300,000 patents that do get registered.
 
I don't want to include litigation in this analysis because you needn't be registered by the USPTO to perform litigation.
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