Patent Search Can Lead to Other Commercial Pursuits

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What do I do if my invention is found through a search to be patented already?

Patent Search Can Lead to Other Commercial Pursuits

One of the most frustrating aspects of a patent search is that there is a likelihood you'll discover someone else has already patented your invention. However, this does not necessarily have to be the end of the road for your product or technology idea. Did you know that the reason Thomas Edison was able to invent his lightbulb was due, in part, because he purchased the patent rights of someone else?

Sometimes inventors patent technology and never do anything with it. This is because they either don't have the financial resources or they are busy working on other more lucrative ventures. So, if you discover in a patent database that someone else has patented your idea, you can consider purchasing the rights to theirs. Sometimes specific patent rights are advertised on websites or by other means as being for sale, too.

If you decide to negotiate buying someone else's patent rights, do not do so without the help of a patent lawyer. If you obtain the rights to the patent, make sure you know about all the maintenance fees involved. The other way you can use a patent search is to find a patent owner who is open to licensing his or her invention to you. If you find your idea has already been protected, that inventor might negotiate a way for your to commercialize and market the idea anyway.



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