Sunday, December 18, 2005

Utility Patent Application, Yes

A recent inquiry was puzzled with the term "utility" patent application. What that person had was not a "utility" application, right? Wrong.

There are three types of U.S. patents. A design patent which protects the appearance of something. A plant patent which protects certain plant reproductions.

Everything else falls within the utility patent category. Its for when you want to protect something for what it does, or what one can do with it. In other words, its utility is the important feature.

A utility patent is so fundamental that its frequently just referred to as a patent, and if instead you mean a design patent or plant patent, you say design patent, plant patent.

So do not let the term "utility" disturb you. Read more about patents on the USPTO official website at or my website or use if easier to remember. (Both go to the same website, different entries.)


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