As a child, a teacher or parent likely scolded us at least once for the words we chose to use when fighting with a sibling, friend, or classmate. Afterall, we were sternly reprimanded, our words have power. This is one example where that advice holds true. A patent is a powerful legal tool that can help keep competitors from stealing an invention — but only if we use the right words.
The strength of that tool is directly impacted by the words we use in the patent application. So how can we make sure our patent covers our invention? How can we get a patent that is strong enough to survive a challenge? The following three tips will help better ensure you have an enforceable patent.
#1: Point of difference
In order to have a patentable invention, it needs to be notably different from other inventions. Patent experts recommend having a clear description of the improvement that makes your invention different from everything else that is out there. It is generally much easier to defend a potential infringement when the words used to describe the invention are clear.
In addition to descriptive words, use of professional drawings can help.
#2: The alternatives
It is important to think outside the box — what are other ways competitors may use the invention? A competitor could use a table, for example, as more than just a table. Someone else could market it as a bookshelf or desk. Include these options within the patent description to help better ensure protection.
#3: Protect variants
It is also a good idea to think of different workarounds and, if they are manufacturable, file patent protections for those as well. If funds are tight, we can table this option and start filing for additional protections once the inventor starts to get revenue for the initial patented invention.