What is one proven technique to get your utility patent application through the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) quickly and efficiently?
One secret of success for many utility patent applications and which is the proven technique to get your patent application through the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) quickly and efficiently is: PROVIDE GREAT VISUALS THAT SHOW THE UTILITY PATENT EXAMINER HOW TO MAKE AND USE YOUR INVENTION.
Think about it: what catches your eye AND your interest when you are reading anything? VISUALS!! When you are looking through news on Linked-In, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. - VISUALS - i.e. - photos, sketches, rich visual content are the elements which catch your eye before you start reading any text.
The visuals, what we call "figures", in a utility non-provisional patent application can have the same effect. While this visual technique is not too helpful for chemistry-based cases in which chemical formula-based patent claims are needed, even such chemistry-based cases can provide flow charts which may help provide a visual to the Utility Patent Examiner.
For mechanical, materials-based, electrical, software, and medical device type utility patent cases, visuals can be your "best friend" for the Utility Patent Examiner. When I was a Utility Patent Examiner many moons ago (1993-1996), I found the easiest cases to examine were those in which the visuals (the figures) told the complete story: where I could understand the claimed invention without even reading the text of the original patent application.
I often found that the patent cases that I enjoyed the most when I was a Utility Patent Examiner were the ones where I could literally "see" the claim elements in the drawings. That is, any element recited in the claims could easily be seen in the drawings of the patent case.
So when I am drafting a utility patent case, which on average will take me at least 30 hours to draft, I will spend at least 1/2 that time (at least 15 hours) on preparing the drawings for a mechanical, materials-based, electrical, software, and medical device type patent case. My objective with any set of figures for a patent case is to explain to the Utility Examiner, in pictures/visuals, how to make AND use the invention.
My figures of my client's patent applications become the key focus of discussion when I prosecute my client's patent application through the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Specifically, when I schedule a telephone interview with a Utility Examiner, I make sure the written agenda for my telephone interview has at least one figure/visual from the patent case which contains most of the claimed elements.
I also find a figure from the closest prior art document and position that figure next to the figure from my client's case. And in a response to an Office Action, I always include a figure from my client's case to help support my arguments of patentability for the case.
So if you want to help your patent case get through the Patent Office rather efficiently, then tell your story about your invention with a great set of visuals!
HERE ARE SOME SAMPLE VISUALS THAT HAVE HELPED MY CLIENTS' PATENT CASES: