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Author Topic: To claim a device including a novel feature or just the novel feature?  (Read 201 times)

Patentstudent

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Let's presume that someone invented a novel 'feature' (comprising an LED and a small printed circuit board) for flaslights that can be incorporated in any type of flaslight during manufacturing of the flashlight.
What is the best way to go about claiming it?
Is it better to claim the 'feature' on its own or to claim a flashlight comprising the 'feature'?

Thank you.
« Last Edit: 04-20-17 at 02:41 pm by Patentstudent »
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MYK

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Claim the new thing all by itself.  That way your patent, assuming it issues as written, would apply to automotive headlights as well as to flashlights, searchlights, medical gadgets that include lighting, and so on.

If you only claim a whole device that happens to have the novel feature, then your patent would mostly apply to that whole device.

I've sometimes heard these two strategies called "novelty claiming" and "picture claiming".
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"The life of a patent solicitor has always been a hard one."  Judge Giles Rich, Application of Ruschig, 379 F.2d 990.

Disclaimer: not only am I not a lawyer, I'm not your lawyer.  Therefore, this does not constitute legal advice.

Patentstudent

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MYK, thank you. This is very helpful information.
Since I had never heard the term "picture claiming" before, I looked it up.
I found a short paragraph in Slusky's book 'Invention Analysis and Claiming' that discusses picture claiming.
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