Monday, November 19, 2007

Two or More Persons conceive an Invention Question

If two or more persons conceive an invention, to whom will a United States patent be granted?

A. If each conceived parts of the invention as defined in the claims of a U.S. patent application – even if only as to one claim, they are joint inventors and any patent issued will be issued to them and owned jointly. If, on the other hand, one of these persons conceived all of the parts of the invention, and the other has only followed instructions in making it or reducing it to practice, the person who conceived the invention is the sole inventor and any patent issued will be issued and owned in his/her name alone.
If a first person conceives all parts of an invention and a second person employs the first person or furnishes the money for building and testing the invention, should an United States patent application be filed by the first and second persons jointly?
A. No. The application must be signed by the true inventor, and filed by the inventor in the United States Patent & Trademark Office, WWW.USPTO.GOV in the inventor’s name. This is the person who conceives of all parts of an invention (e.g. the first person in the above fact pattern), not the employer or the person who furnishes the money.
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