Read this tip to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Patent Law and other Invention topics.
Let's say you discover that a competitor of yours is infringing on a patent that you have issued to you. At least that's what you initially think. Once you look at the situation--and your patent wording--more closely you realize the mistake may have been yours. Maybe the wording in your patent allowed some leeway for a competitor to sell a product with some of the features of your invention but not all of them. This could occur just because you described your product to have two features connected by the word and.' That way, your competitor may not be infringing after all.
What do you do? You could still file a patent infringement and take your chances. But a good patent invention attorney would also encourage you to have your patent reissued instead. There is a grace period after a patent is filed in which it can be reissued and you should check with the US Patent and Trademark Office for those current details. This grace period is determined by exactly what type of reissue you want to achieve. In any case, the changes you want to make must be supported by your originally filed patent claim.
Unless the change was discussed somewhere in your original claim, your case may be weak for a reissue. In the example above, the inventor may be able to use the word 'or' instead of 'and' so that the competitor's activities are now considered an infringement. Patent reissues are complication business and many other sophisticated technicalities may impact the decision. If you are new to invention patents you may want to seek one of the best types of help for inventors--a patent law firm.
|Sheri Ann Richerson|