Patents, Inventions and Designs
Every patent can protect one invention. When an inventor files his patent application through a patent attorney, the inventor and patent attorney need to work together and coordinate their expectations. Many inventors naively think that adding more inventions
and activities into their patent application will enable their patent to receive a wider scope of protection. In practice, this is not usually the case.
The patent attorney usually looks for and defines the main points of the invention, what would be described as the essence of the invention. However, the inventor may not wish to add irrelevant details that are not the invention’s main inventive step.
The patent attorney usually tries to describe the invention’s essence as the main claim of the patent. Secondary claims that are dependent on the main claim are filed as such.
Secondary claims endeavor to widen the scope of protection of the patent application. For example: In a patent filed to protect a sewing machine, various mechanisms can be used in different mechanical forms, for example, making linear movement circular, or changing a circular movement into linear through use of different mechanical machineries and methods. However, the essence of the invention, of a sewing machine, is a needle with a hole through which a thread is passed; the hole is situated close to the needle thread. Therefore, the application for this invention should focus on the situation of the hole in the needle, in order to protect the most important essence of the invention.
In each patent application, the inventor and patent attorney must define as clearly as possible what the essence of the invention is.
To define and characterize the essence of the invention, it is necessary to consult with a patent attorney who will examine each individual case. it is worthwhile to carry out a concept plan that defines the invention technically, as this may affect the scope of rights for which the inventor may file a patent.
Sometimes after examining an invention, the patent attorney may conclude that it is not possible to obtain a patent, but the invention may be able to be protected through alternative means. For example, the invention may be able to be protected as a design
. In order to obtain a registered patent, the invention must meet all requirements and criteria of Patent Law. Amongst the required criteria is the need to prove innovativeness, inventive progress, usefulness, and in the field of technology it is necessary to prove ability for industrial production. In some cases, the inventor is also interested in protecting the shape and design of the product. If this is the case, protection can be applied for the design at the patent offices and Patent Authority in Israel and round the world. In the USA, a design application is called a design patent
, and can be combined together with the patent application, thus broadening the scope of the intellectual property protection.