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Types of Patent Protection: Utility Patent

Bibliographic Data

  • Patent Number
  • Issue Date
  • Title of Invention *
  • Inventor *
  • Assignee (owner) (if any) *
  • Application Number
  • Application Date
  • Prior Publication / Foreign Priority Data *
  • Related US Application Data *
  • Term Adjustment Data (if any)
  • Patent Examiner: USPTO employee who examined the application
  • Patent Attorney (if any): Legal counsel hired by the inventor
  • Abstract: * A brief summary of the invention

Classification Data: to define the subject matter

  • Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC): * Used by the European Patent Office (EPO) and the USPTO since 2015
  • International Patent Classification (IPC): Used by more than 100 countries  (but not the U.S.)
  • US Patent Classification (USPC): *  for U.S. documents only, prior to 2015
  • Field of Search: * US or CPC classes cited by the examiner

References Cited: Prior Art Identified by the Inventor or Examiner

  • US Patent Documents: *
  • Foreign Patent Documents: *
  • Other publications: * articles, manufacturers' catalogs, industry standards, etc.

Drawings: required when they are necessary to the understanding of the invention

Covered in Section 1825 of the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP).  The physical requirements for drawings are outlined in PCT Rule 11.

* Can be searched to yield other relevant patents

Examples of a Utility Patent Front Page

Many drugs and other types of pharmaceuticals are considered "compositions of matter."  Follow this link for more resources for searching for chemicals / pharmaceuticals: http://clemson.libguides.com/advanced_patent_searching/chem

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Specification: is a written description of the invention, comprising the following parts:

  • Title
  • Cross-reference to related applications: to help identify related documents such as provisional patent application, etc.
  • Background of the Invention: to highlight benefits of new invention over current art.
  • Summary of the invention: details of the claims rather than the invention as a whole (as in the background).
  • Description of the Drawings
  • Detailed Description of the Invention: a broad description with additional specific examples of certain embodiments
  • Sequence listing: if a nucleic acid or amino acid sequences is included.
  • Abstract

Claims: the heart of the patent, delimiting what is legally covered - and not covered - by the patent.

This is where the legal requirements are outlined in great details, in independent and dependent claims.  See Section 2173 of the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP) for further detail.