A patent attorney, or patent agent as they are commonly referred to, is an attorney/legal representative who specializes in the area of patents. It is highly advisable to enlist the services of a patent attorney when seeking registration and when performing a patent search. Depending on the country, the requirements to practice as an attorney vary considerably and it is important to ensure your chosen attorney is officially certified.
Patent attorney explained
As mentioned, a patent attorney is a qualified legal person that specializes in the area of patent law. The primary responsibilities of an attorney in this field is to assist individuals and companies in obtaining registration, conducting searches, and to represent them in cases where infringement occurs. They also assist in the renewal of patent protection where required, and can provide reliable and valuable information on how to comply with applicable patent laws and jurisdictional requirements.
With regards to patent searches, many intellectual property offices’ have online databases that are accessible to the general public to perform a search. However, the search results of a patent database are often very complex and difficult to interpret for laypersons; it is therefore prudent to acquire the assistance of an attorney. By using a patent professional to perform a search, this will demonstrate to the courts that due diligence and good faith was exercised when seeking registration.
A patent attorney is authorized to handle all aspects related to patents and must ensure compliance with the relevant legislations and practices in every country where the patent rights are sought.
It is wise to select an attorney with significant experience in the field of intellectual property law, especially in the country in which you seek patent protection. Many patent attorneys will typically work in large organizations, private forms or government departments.