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Choosing the Right Patent Drawing Partner: What US Attorneys Should Consider?

US attorneys who are involved in intellectual property and patent filings need accurate and quality patent drawings for their patent filings. Patent drawings are not just some illustrations but are integral in defining the scope of patent claims. Patent drawings are a fundamental requirement for most patent applications submitted to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). They must clearly illustrate the invention’s features that are pertinent to the claims made in the application. The USPTO has stringent guidelines on how these drawings are presented, including details on shading, line types, and reference characters. A well-executed drawing can facilitate the examiner’s understanding of the invention, potentially speeding up the approval process. According to a study by the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA), poorly prepared drawings are among the common reasons for initial office actions, which can delay patent issuance by several months.

Challenges Patent Attorneys Face on a Daily Basis

Patent attorneys often are very busy with other high end strategic and complex work and may find less time to spend on actual creation of the illustrations. This sometimes results in filing of patent applications with incomplete or erroneous drawings. This causes multiple office actions during the examination phase even just because of some minor errors that might have been addressed at the filing stage. Even if attorneys spend time to prepare accurate and error free drawings, it requires a lot of their time, which is not justified as they can close more business during those hours they spend on actual drawings preparation.

Given this significance of the drawings and the busy schedules of US patent attorneys, there certainly needs a better solution where attorneys can get assistance from external partners who can do this job without requiring significant time from attorneys. If attorneys can simply share the task and the drawing partners can do the rest of the work by themselves with no or minimal involvement from patent attorneys, it will certainly be a great help for patent attorneys.

There are companies who offer such support services in preparing design patent drawings and utility patent drawings. You should choose your partner wisely after evaluating them for the following criteria.

Key Factors to Consider When Selecting a Patent Drawing Provider

Expertise and Compliance Knowledge

Choose a partner who not only has technical drawing skills but also a deep understanding of USPTO requirements. This expertise ensures that drawings are compliant from the outset, reducing the risk of rejections due to non-compliance. You should check whether the drawings company has ever prepared patent applications. If yes, then their team has a good command over understanding of the overall process and know the subtle nuances involved in patent writing, which helps them understand illustration requirements also.

Experience in Your Specific Field

The complexity of patent drawings can vary significantly based on the nature of invention, fields of technology, and so on. A drawing service provider with experience in your specific area can better understand the technical nuances of the invention and convert it into good patent drawings.

Patent drawings providers who have a specialized experience in specific technologies and type of drawings have been shown to reduce submission errors by up to 35% compared to non-specialized drawing services.

Turnaround Time and Reliability

Patent filings are often time-sensitive particularly when you have to file non provisionals or continuations with strict deadlines. It’s important to assess the provider’s commitment to deadlines and their ability to deliver high-quality work promptly. Sometimes, you may need to get the work done fast within days. You should check if the company can deliver rush projects or not.

A survey by our company, ProfessionalPatentDrawings, indicated that a delay in drawings contributed to a 25% increase in the overall time to file a patent for US attorney.

Confidentiality and Security

Given the sensitive nature of patents that involve inventions, the confidentiality and security protocols of your drawing partner are important. Ensure they have stringent measures in place to protect your intellectual property and can sign NDA. Most outsourcing partners prepare NDA for their legal jurisdictions which might be difficult for you in case there is cross border engagement. It’s important you get the NDA covered in your home country.

Cost-Effectiveness

While cost should not be the primary factor, it is certainly important particularly in outsourcing where you can leverage lower costs. Look for a provider who offers transparent pricing without compromising on quality and compliance.

Comparisons show that outsourcing patent drawings to specialized agencies can reduce costs by up to 40% compared to handling them in-house, without affecting the quality and deadlines for filing patent applications with the patent offices.

Customer Support and Communication

When you are particularly working with teams across countries, effective communication is very important. Your patent drawing partner should be responsive and willing to collaborate closely with your legal team to ensure that all drawings accurately reflect the invention. You should have clarity about work progress and status all the time without you reminding the drawings team again and again. Make sure your drawings partner is like virtual team who is there to handle your work any time any day without any problems. They must be reachable all the time through communication channels that you prefer to use via emails, instant messages, phone calls etc. Valuable customer service is as important as the technical accuracy of the drawings.

Key Takeaways

Choosing the right patent drawing partner is a strategic decision that impacts the efficiency and success rate of patent filings. By considering the provider’s expertise, experience, reliability, confidentiality measures, cost-effectiveness, and quality of customer service, you can significantly improve your patent application’s chances for success. At ProfessionalPatentDrawings, we aim to deliver high quality and reliable services to our clients across, the US, Europe, and many other countries. We ensure our teams deliver your work successfully on all the above parameters that are indicators of a good partner company. If you have any patent application preparation project and need support in patent drawings, you can contact us through the below form or email us directly at info@professionalpatentdrawings.com.

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