A provisional patent is the stepping stone to getting a full and authorized patent. Yet, there is a secret that many people who have never dealt with patents may not know. A provisional patent is a nice step in the right direction, but it is often not the thing that will lead to a full patent. Sometimes, for a million different reasons, a provisional patent leads to very little.
A provisional patent is typically established to set a product into an exclusive category and to confirm with the law offices that this person is involved with this product. A provisional patent is like 49% of a patent in that it helps to secure some ownership of the product being developed, but not the full item.
The vagueness of the above often leads to a major dilemma. It is possible for someone to establish a patent faster and more securely while someone else has a similar item in provisions. A provisional patent does not ensure or secure the final patent, which leads to troubling realities for many inventors. Patent Lawyers help navigate this disconcerting transitional period for many people.
Why go for provisional patents at all? They can be obtained quite quickly. They can also be obtained at a comparatively affordable price. In many scenarios, they did lead to the final securing of the patent.
The provisional patent can be, at minimum, a cover sheet and a description of the product. This is all that is needed. Yet, in order to get more legwork out of the use of a provisional patent, lawyers will recommend offering more information. Provide an extremely detailed assessment of the product as well as what it can be used for.
Lawyers will also steer inventors away from bottom-basement options that can be secured for roughly $20. This is too affordable, and often leads to securing nothing at all except a little comfort on behalf of the inventor. Provisionals are helpful tools, but they are over-leveraged. Worse yet, they often under-deliver on the promise of securing a patent, which makes them a nice distraction to get to the final patent and little more.