Making Sure Your Invention Patent Isn’t Worthless

in #patent2 years ago (edited)


Most experts agree the vast majority of patents are pretty worthless. Realistically speaking, less than 10% of them will have a real use, and it wouldn’t be surprising if it dips much lower. This just isn’t small-time inventors’ patents, but large companies also register a lot of useless ideas.

When venture capital is looking to back up a patent, they are looking at the second or third patent over the first. Early ideas may be half-baked and nowhere near market maturity, and unfortunately, isn’t viable for investment.


Going in the right direction

If you’re a new investor, you’re probably better of consulting with an invention company from the start, even before the patent filing process.

The romantic idea of garage inventors filing patents is still a reality, but realistically speaking, successful patents often have companies and teams of experts behind them. Especially in advanced medicine or tech fields, a newbie might want to get their feet wet in the corporate world before trying to cook up a ground-breaking patent.

Business Plans

It’s a common newbie mistake to base a business around just one patent, especially if it isn’t even approved yet. The value of a patent is to prevent being overwhelmed by competition in a booming market, so you already should have a working business model.

Having a large collection of patents can give you the advantage of covering a niche in the tech industry, which is why large companies are usually on top of patents. However, as a small business, you should already have a marketable product and filing patents on a “just-in-case” basis would be a poor financial decision.

Market research is invaluable, and it can be a big investment of time & money. A simple search of the USPTO is to see if there are already similar patents, but you should also observe other companies that are likely to be working on something similar to you.

The patent process involving attorneys and the USPTO isn’t about advising on your business plans, but rather going through the intellectual property side of things. There are other types of businesses you can consult with for funding and business plan guidance, often favoring small independent inventors like yourself.


All of this aside, filing dozens of patents as a small company could completely blow your budget. Think about upwards of $20,000 for final patents, and that doesn’t include potential legal costs for defending intellectual property down the road.

This doesn’t mean that the independent inventor with the right idea and connections can’t make amazing things happen. There are tons of lucky individuals that filed at the right time and make a decent living from royalties alone. Just like a good investment in the stock market, this sort of thing occurs with industry insight and proper execution.

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