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Inventor's Handbook

This handbook was created by the Lemelson-MIT Program to address the independent inventor's most frequently asked questions regarding United States patents. It aims to provide some helpful information on the patenting and commercialization processes.

Chapter 1: What Is Intellectual Property?

Chapter 2: What Can Be Patented?

Chapter 3: Is My Idea Patentable?

Chapter 4: How Do I Conduct a Patent Search?

Chapter 5: Is My Invention Worth Patenting?

Chapter 6: How Do I Apply for a Patent?

Chapter 7: How Do I Prove the Idea Is Mine?

Chapter 8: What Are Some Options to Commercialize My Patent?

Chapter 9: How Do I License My Invention?

Chapter 10: What Are Some Guidelines in Developing a Business Plan?

Chapter 11: How Do I Raise Capital?

The Lemelson-MIT handbook for inventors is provided on an informational basis only and does not constitute legal advice. This information is provided "as is" and without warranties of any kind, expressed or implied.

Copyright © Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Domestic & International

 U.S. Patents

[Button]United States Patent and Trademark Office
Access to free USPTO databases which provide full text patents from 1976 forward, trademarks, AIDS patent data and Official Gazette (OG) notices.

[Button]US Patent and Trademark Office Reference Library

[Button] US Patent Class Definitions

[Button] Patent Glossary
By Delphion.

International Patents

[Button] World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
Access PatentScope search service.

[Button] European Patent Office Webguide Access to patent databases and patent offices from all over the globe and other patent related information.

[Button] Canadian Intellectual Property Office
Search Canadian patents and trademarks.

[Button] Instituto Mexicano de la Propediad Industrial
Mexican Institute of Industrial Property - Spanish language site. Cómo registrar una invención.

Hall of Fame

National Inventors Hall of Fame

"The National Inventors Hall of Fame Foundation is the premier not-for-profit organization in America dedicated to recognizing, honoring and encouraging invention and creativity through the administration of its programs. The Hall of Fame honors the men and women responsible for the great technological advances that make human, social and economic progress possible. Founded in 1973 by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and the National Council of Intellectual Property Law Associations."

Inducted 2004

Bradford Parkinson

System and Method for Generating Precise Position Determinations

Global Positioning System Patent Number(s) 5,572,218