What is a Provisional Patent Application?

Patent filing helps you protect your invention from third parties. Once you file the patent application, it undergoes scrutiny by the examiner at the patent office which examines your application and then decides whether to pass it or not. However, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued you a document, Provisional Patent Application. This document is highly useful if you are going to file the formal patent later. Reading this article will tell you about the provisional patent application in more detail. So read till last.

Also read: What is a PCT Patent Application?

Provisional Patent Application (PPA): Meaning

Many times it happens that you want to patent your idea, but it is still raw and you need more time to refine it. But you can’t take the risk of keeping it vulnerable to being copied by someone else. In such cases, when you need more time to file the final patent application, but still want to protect your raw idea, a Provisional Patent Application helps you in such cases.

A provisional Patent application is a document you get from USPTO, after filing the non-final application. It gives your invention the protection for 12 months, from being copied by someone else. However, you must file the original patent application in 12 months, as the protection seizes automatically after 12 months.

So, PPA gives you a short-term offer to protect your invention or idea. A document containing 10 pages or less, PPA requires less effort and expenditure than a formal one. You need to simply explain the invention and its design, and you can attach a few illustrations if it explains the invention clearly.

Also read: International Patent Filing Strategy: Best Practices to Follow

Significance of PPA

The period of 12 months you get after filing a provisional patent application gives you the time to further enhance your invention. You can practically pitch the idea by testing its commercial feasibility. If you can make your idea a practical, commercial invention useful for industrial use, you can then file the formal application for it.

So it saves you from the rejection you will face if you file the raw idea as a formal patent application. The formal filing is also an expensive and time taking process, which is not useful to go for if your invention is still not ready. Your invention gets a label of “patent pending”, which means that you have filed the provisional patent application for the invention.

Here are a few takeaways on the significance of Provisional Patent Application:

  • Provisional Patent Application is not the actual patent, and hence don’t consider it a substitute for original patent filing.
  • It doesn’t give you the final patent grant for your invention.
  • But it is the cheapest way to protect your invention for 12 months before filing the original application.
  • Allows you to develop your idea into a full-fledged invention ready to acquire a patent grant after 12 months.
  • Filing PPA is the first and key step if you want a new patent in the US for your idea/invention.
  • The Patent Pending label on your invention signifies that PPA is filed for it. Thus, grants your invention the copyright and prevents others from copying your idea.
  • But ensure to file the formal patent application in 12-months, else the 12-month protection will seize. It will lead to the loss of your idea.

Also read: Why to hire Patent Filing Service?

Whom to select for PPA filing?

Filing a provisional patent application certainly gives immense opportunities for the development of your idea. However, you need professional assistance to make the patent filing easier for you. Thus, we think we can do it best for you, as the experience and knowledge we share in this domain are unmatchable. Hence, hire us, “Patent Paralegal Force” to get the best service for your patent filing needs.

Our team consists of highly skilled and experienced patent professionals who help you with patent filing. Working for more than a decade, we have earned clients in over 45+ countries around the world. We work with understanding your needs, and hence give the results that you desire. Read more about our services here.

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