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scatterbrainscatterbrain subscriber Posts: 1
edited September 2006 in Protecting Your Ideas
Some one told me to do a poor man`s patent for my idea. Write my idea on a piece of paper, date it, and mail it to myself certified.  do not open it. that way, he said, there will be proof that you had the idea in writing before anyone else did.  Only drawback, he said, was that a judge might not see it that way if someone else went through the hassle  and time to get a patent through a patent attorney.  Any ideas or thoughts about this?  I have an idea, just not a couple thousand dollars for an attorney...right now.


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    iouone2iouone2 subscriber Posts: 14
    Your friend is right. It is not very effective in today`s "smart people" world. For example, why shouldn`t I send an empty envelope, unsealed to myself in the same manner you suggested. Then, when I want to "steal" an idea, I just type it up, place it in the envelope and head to the court house.It`s not bad for assisting in proving your case, but that dated envelope in itself will never stand in court as an evidence document.PS. I am not a lawyer, I just play one on SuN.
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    LynnLynn subscriber Posts: 0
    Common sense tells me that the idea wouldn`t hold up in a court of law, but if I were you I`d conduct a little bit of Internet research and see if there are any precedents regarding it.  While I was at it, I would research what the requirements are for being granted a patent and see if I couldn`t file for a patent myself, without utilizing a lawyer. 
    One final idea:  many lawyers offer a free initial consultation. If you haven`t already consulted an attorney, why not take advantage of that offer with a patent attorney and see what you can find out about the patent application process?  Maybe your particular situation is less complex - and therefore - cheaper - than you think.  Or maybe there are many tasks that an attorney would normally perform for you that you could perform yourself, minimizing your use of an attorney. 
    Hope these ideas help.  Good luck!
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    hamsterhamster subscriber Posts: 0
    Go to the home page, way down int he left column click on inventing, then click on getting a patent I think it is, then click on the legalzoom.com ad (for a provisional patent) that comes up and read the condensed version of the rules for obtaining a patent. It takes a while to read through all the pages but I did this the other night and it is MUCH easier than trying to find and understand all the info on USPTO`s site.
    I am going through the same thing right now and need info on getting a patent and am considering a provisional patent but have more questions to ask yet.
    One thing I learned is that if a product has been advertised for sale by you or anyone else, it is then considered "published" and non-patentable, by you or anyone else.  Sorry if this info has been repeated in the past, I am new to this site and enjoying it so far.
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