Patent illustration services can be of immense use when it comes to getting a patent application approved by the respective patent office. As we know, when ideas are presented in pictures it outperforms a thousand words and patent illustrations do exactly the same. A well-crafted patent illustration not only improves the outlook of a patent application but also let examiners understand your invention clearly without having to spend much of their precious time and energy.
With this article, our main aim is to underline what are various purposes of a patent illustration and why companies need patent illustration services for a quality and effective patent drawing. Below are some of the purposes that a meticulously crafted patent illustration serves for applicants.
Let examiners understand invention better: One of the primary purposes that a patent illustration serves is that it makes the invention simpler and easy to understand. With several views, embodiments, flow charts, chemical equations, and photographs it lets examiners understand each of the features of your invention clearly without having to spend them much of their precious time and energy.
Let inventors attract eyeballs of prospective licensee: In long-run patent illustration can help inventors grab the attention of potential licensee. A meticulously crafted patent illustration contains reference numerals those are used by patent attorneys for detailed description. These reference numerals are used for drawing the attention of the prospective licensee and allowing him to easily envision the final product when it will be launched and sold to the end user.
Helps in defending your point in prosecution: As we mentioned earlier, a picture speaks more than a thousand words and this is why we need to use illustrations irrespective of the nature of the patent (utility, design or plant). When things are not clear textually, drawing can help people get things cleared and it is of immense use when you are facing litigation and you are supposed to make things clear in the law of court.
Reduce time for granting patent approval: A well-crafted patent illustration helps examiners understand the accompanying invention without having to spend much of their time and energy reducing the time needed for various office actions. This helps in potentially getting patent granted in less time compared to those applications that are not accompanied by drawings.
Rules for Patent Illustration:
Neatness: Even if, you present each and every feature of your invention accurately but the drawing has strikethroughs, over writings and alterations you risk rejection. Though it is not documented anywhere that your patent illustration should be neat and clean still patent office like USPTO want you to present a neat and error-free drawing that is readable.
Legibility: Legibility is the ability to distinguish various letters and is another criterion a professional draft person needs to follow where each and every text, word and image should not overlap its adjacent element. Failing to achieve optimum legibility could lead to rejection of your application.
Readability: Readability is another criterion that is not documented anywhere but we need to follow it during this whole process. Spacing within words, between words and between lines must be such that the resulting text is again visually readable.
Visually Appealing: Not only you need to have a legible drawing but it should also be visually appealing where your drawing sheet should be devoid of folds, crakes, holes and creases.
Use Metric System: Any dimension and sizing information presented in a patent disclosure must be given in metric inches preferably centimeters in case of small devices millimeters can be used. Though USPTO doesn’t forbid using English Engineering Units still they prefer metric system and thus we need to follow this rule as well.
Sheet Size: Sheet size is another important criterion that we need to follow while making a patent drawing. Patent office like USPTO is very specific on sheet size and allows only two kinds of sheet size a) 21 cm x 29.7 cm which is also called as A4 size and b) 21.6 cm x 27.9 cm which is used throughout the United States.
Now let’s understand why companies need patent illustration services for their inventions:
Patent drawing involves many rules: Unlike normal drawing, patent drawings involve plenty of rules that need to be followed. For example the size of the sheet is specific, the margins that are allowed in a drawing are fixed, and numbering systems that are allowed in a drawing are particular etc. For those who are uninitiated understand, recalling and implementing all these rules will be overwhelming and therefore patent illustration services will be important here. With this companies can avail the services of expert patent illustrators who are acquainted with all such rules.
Regulatory framework is complex: Dealing with patent offices like USPTO is not a cakewalk; it involves many stringent rules and regulations that we need to follow. When we submit patent illustrations, we should have clear-cut understanding of the regulatory framework of the respective patent office. For those who have not dealt with these patent offices before getting an illustration approved could be overwhelming and therefore we need assistance of expert draft-person who is expert in providing patent illustration services to clients.
When time is a constraint: We believe creating patent drawing is not a rocket science, still when you have limited time we need someone who understands the nitty-gritty of the domain and can give the maximum output with minimum inputs. When you are running out of time hiring a patent illustrator can be of immense importance.
When you need expert draft-person: Much of the success of a patent illustration depends on the draft-person who is creating the drawing. The more experienced a draft-person is higher are the chances of your drawing being accepted by the respective patent office.
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