Provisional Patent Drawings: Everything You Need to Know


Provisional patent drawings are invention’s illustrations which are used to describe the assembling of the invention and its working. The primary objective behind submission of provisional patent drawings is to ensure that the invention is clear and detailed enough to serve future patent protection.

Patent Drawings & Invention Illustrations

Patent drawings are used to illustrate and explain the working of an invention. But, in the case of selling an invention, illustrations are considered to be more indispensable as they showcase how the invention will be helpful in someone’s work and hence should be purchased. So, patent drawings must showcase invention’s each feature which includes exploded view with reference digits to display how entire pieces assemble together and helps in referring the viewer to the description section of the patent application in order to explain in detail about various parts. Moreover, it also becomes helpful to an attorney in explaining each step in detail used in the creation of the invention.

To provide patent in a standard format the USPTO has already mentioned strict guidelines considering various aspects of drawings submitted along with non-provisional patent application are:

  • Paper size
  • Paper Type
  • Shading
  • Font Size
  • Paper Margins, etc.

Also read: How to Make Effective Patent Drawings?

Facts to Know About Provisional Patent Applications

A provisional patent application if completed poorly then, it would not be beneficial. However, it can be used as evidence proving the filing date of the provisional patent application. In fact, a poor provisional patent application does not fulfill the protection eligibility criteria.

Due to the potentially catastrophic result, the inventor must have a deep understanding of the provisional patent application process in order to avoid being the victim of people having less knowledge of preparing PPA or people who tend to set scam to an unsuspecting inventor. On the internet, you can easily find provisional patent services at much-reduced rate, but ultimately in long run, they will cost you much more than you would have ever expected.

Also read: Five Tips For Choosing the Right Patent Illustrator

Provisional Patent Application Drawings

Patent drawings are the only area wherein a simple inventor may be led wide. A provisional patent application is a short and simple form in comparison to a complete patent application. Some also believe that requirements do differ and there is no need of drawings. It is a usual contention with non-attorney patent application services. In fact, it cannot be overlooked that provisional patent applications are not as formal as the full patent applications; it is a matter wherein function contradicts with the form. The main objective of provisional patent application is to get your invention protection.

A provisional patent application drawings need to disclose the complete invention along with its working and drawings as they help in understanding the subject matter more clearly. Moreover, drawings provide proper illustrations clearing all the complex written explanations of the invention. However, there are exceptions in the case of chemical compounds which are based on the way through which they are formed rather than the way they appear.

Provisional Patent Application Description

Filling a complete provisional patent application is a really hectic task and if completed with the help of a lay person then, it will be rejected as he/she may lack required patent knowledge. If you are disclosing your invention with a defective provisional patent application then the disclosure is useless as it ruins the future protection rights needed for invention. Sadly, without a patent examiner, you would not be able to know about your defective provisional patent application.

Also read: A Guide to Patent Drawings, Draft Descriptions, and Abstracts

Provisional Patent Applications: Need Not to Fear

Importance of provisional patent application has increased due to change is United States patent law which is in consideration of the first-to-file model to the first-to-invent model. A provisional patent application should be used for simple inventions or for big companies that have created sophisticated software applications. Moreover, if your invention has reached a certain level where it can be considered as a concrete thing then PPA use is beneficial.  Availing patent attorney assistance is one of the best options, but is there is a shortage of resources then alternates are also available.

Also read: A Short Guide to Office Actions in Utility Patent Drawings

Patent Drawings

At the cost of $100/page professional patent drawings can be obtained. At his cost, you can easily afford many drawings with your patent application and then also it will be less in cost in comparison to attorney costs, patent searches and other additional expenditure of the application process.

However, there is no need to hire a professional illustrator having experience in patent drawings; there exist many strict rules that seem stupid for a layman. But, if the rules and guidelines provided by the USPTO are not followed then, your application will be denied.

Color and Black & White Drawings

Black & White

Traditional patent drawings include ink on paper made using a ruler and a black pen and white India ink. This form of drawings is very difficult and has a very minimal chance of error. But, this form of traditional drawings method uses cost-effective basic tools.

Color

In case, if you want to present your invention more adequately, you should submit photographs and color drawings. If proceeding with this then you are supposed to submit three sets of drawings along with a complete explanation on why the color is preferred over black and white.

Procedure for Provisional Patent Application

Mentioned below are three steps you need to follow if you want to prepare a provisional patent application in appropriate manner:

StepsDescription
Patent SearchBefore allocating resources for your invention conduct an appropriate search to make sure that your invention is actually new. For search either you can take help of internet or hire a professional.
Invention DescriptionYour invention must be appropriately described consisting of its working, steps involved in working, and how to make it. Moreover, the description must include some drawings and illustrations to appropriately convey the subject matter of the invention or idea.
Patent FileAfter the completion of your file, do proceed with the filing process at the USPTO. It can be either done via mail or online. The filing fees ($65 for micro-entities; $130 for small entities) are submitted with the application.

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