In Episode 23 of the “Law & Business” podcast, Verna Law’s own patent agent, Wil Jacques, speaks with Anthony about the three items that make a patentable invention.
The three items for a patentable invention are:
- It must be new or “novel”: the invention must never have been made in public in any way, anywhere, before the date on which the application for a patent is filed. It is almost always preferable to file a patent application before any public disclosure of the invention. Most patent attorneys will try diligently to file a patent application prior to any public release or announcement in order to allow international patent filings.
- The invention must involve an inventive or “unobvious” step: this step must not be obvious to others with good knowledge and experience of the subject of the invention. This determination is made by deciding whether the invention sought to be patented would have been obvious “to a person having ordinary skill in the art to which the claimed invention pertains.” In other words, the invention is compared to the prior art and a determination is made whether the differences in the new invention would have been obvious to a person having ordinary skill in the type of technology used in the invention.
- The invention is capable of industrial/useful application: an invention must be capable of being made or used in some kind of industry. The invention must have a useful purpose. In most cases, the usefulness requirement is easily met.