International Patent Filing Strategies


Frederick Spaeth
Dilworth

International Patent Filing Strategies

Filing patent applications around the world isn’t easy or inexpensive. Patent applications have to be drafted. Prior art searches performed. Filing fees paid. Translations commissioned. Small and innocuous errors can be not only costly, but catastrophic in terms of enterprise value diminution.

Don’t miss this critical podcast on International Filing Strategies. The following are among the issues discussed:

  • Timelines for filing under the auspices of the Patent Cooperation Treaty and subsequent national phase filings
  • Benefits of filing with the USPTO first versus under the PCT first
  • Filing languages and required translations
  • Quality of prior art searches and examiners at the USPTO versus through the PCT
  • Ability to have interviews with examiners at the USPTO versus through the PCT
  • How developed must provisional patent applications be in order to obtain early priority dates
  • The extent to which NDAs extend grace periods for filing patent applications

About Frederick Spaeth

Frederick A. Spaeth has been serving clients for more than twenty years in the areas of intellectual property law and commercial transactions, including preparing and prosecuting patent, trademark and copyright applications in the U.S. and abroad, and advising clients on questions about validity and infringement. He provides counseling in connection with the formation of R&D-based joint ventures, intellectual property licensing, patent landscape studies, brand protection and enforcement of trademark rights, and a variety of commercial transactions and agreements. Fred has worked closely with in-house general counsel and intellectual property managers, and his experience spans a wide range of industries. He also has experience assisting in various aspects of intellectual property litigation. With an educational background that includes a BS degree in Chemistry, study in engineering, a JD degree and an MBA, Mr. Spaeth is well prepared to address a diverse range of legal, technological and business issues.

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I started off when you asked invited me to do this presentation to I came up with a list of the basic questions that come that came to mind that helped me talk with IP managers at my clients. And when having answers to these basic questions basically helps us to fill out and to map out a strategy that aligns with the business goals for protecting and commercializing new technologies that are our clients have. So the very first one of course is most, maybe the most fundamental is whether or not to file umm. Keeping in mind that you know, submitting a patent application, the first step in the process, one of the first steps is getting a having it published before it’s even examined. So if you’re talking, if the new technology is something like a manufacturing process that’s used internally and that isn’t evident from the end product of filing a patent application on having it published sometimes gives away the secret, OK. On top of that, if competitors use it the same way as the client, that is you know in secret, there’s no way to detect infringement even if it happens and even if you get a patent. So that’s a balancing act that the clients have to go through. So balancing the trade secret, the value of keeping it trade secret versus a disclosure. On the other hand, a lot of inventions are become evident once they’re commercialized and at that point you know the competitors can easily skip over the difficult R and D that might have gone into developing this new invention and have a very quick you know catch up. And that deprives, that deprives the original inventors of a full return on their investment for putting in the R and D. So that justifies pursuing patent protection. And it it’s the basic incentive strategy for that governments have justifying patents in the first place umm. Ok, so when to file. There’s two basic considerations here, but the main one is. And this is a much illegal call as it is a business call because there are key, you know, considerations on the legal side because patents have to be based on inventions that are not already known in public. The comparison is what’s called prior art, whatever the knowledge is out there previously before the applicant has submitted the application. But this can this can include the contributions of the applicant themselves. In many countries. If the invention is released before the patent application is filed, the key qualifying aspect of the invention, which is novelty, is defeated. So for clients that are looking at global protection are we strongly advise filing first? umm.

Speaker 2 05:06
Does that matter if we have an NDA? So let’s say I have a great idea, I haven’t filed a patent application yet, but I disclosed my great idea to you. But we have an NDA. Does that affect the year that I have to file?

Speaker 1 05:24
Yes and no. In a lot of the countries that have the absolute novelty rule, the NDA buys you time absolutely. So they’re very important for that aspect of it. In the US, there’s a little bit different because if you’re commercializing the invention, even if you commercialize in secret. The NDA won’t stop the clock ticking on what we call a grace period. There are a lot of countries that have this. The understanding that sometimes you know an invention is rushed out to market and in many countries, including the US and Canada. Did the patent laws allow for one year after the public disclosure for applicants can still file their patent applications but keeping in mind that they will have defeated novelty in other countries. So again, that’s another one of the balancing acts that you have to practice umm. All right, so I covered the grace periods. And I think we can go on. So once the decision is made that you’ve got an invention or innovation that’s worthy of protection and that patents the way to go. What can? What do you file? What do you file next? Provisional non provisional design? Designs are sometimes a good option, sometimes overlooked. I recently worked with a client that had an add-on for cars in the automotive industry and it was a high tech add-on, but it actually got mounted on the outside of the car and they had a great design for it. And while we’re working on the utility patent for it, I said to them, look, you know, you should really protect us design because you’re going to go to market. And this is the first thing that you know the buyers are going to see and you’re the first thing your competitors will see. So protect the way it looks with the design however. The broader protection was deemed that’s people think of as the Border Protection goes to a utility applications and with utility you have a an option to go with a provisional application for your first filing or non provisional. The provisionals are tend to be easier to file. They’re not examined as closely as non provisionals, if at all. But they do provide an early filing date and that’s the big advantage of them. In addition, they once you file a provisional, you said a clock ticking, it’s one year in which in which time you’ve got to file the related non provisional application. The Provisionals don’t get examined. The non provisional will and that’s that kicks off the actual process for getting a patent but in between the that profiling the provisional and the non provisional. It can be useful to file these incremental filings. So this is typically done when the invention wants they want an early filing date, but R and D is ongoing and as the applicant discovers you know more aspects of the invention that come up with the new features and things you just refile and add to the initial filing. You could do that all the way up in that one year up to the point where you need to file the non provisional. You typically can’t do that with the non provisionals if you start with one that way. The US has a kind of a practice called the continuation in part, which kind of resembles that process. But it’s not something that you can do in many other countries, so the US is good for. And finally, provisional applications. But with non provisional you pretty much locked into whatever you’re disclosure is.

Speaker 2 09:52
So Fred, if the early priority date is important in filing that provisional patent application, how well drafted does it need to be? You know, should we spend pretty much the budget we were planning to spend on the non provisional, you know, pay you that money up front to draft a really nice provisional? Or, you know, can we get their benefit of the earlier priority data if we’re just file something pretty narrow pretty it’s pretty skinny application.

Speaker 1 10:27
That’s a great question. You know, technically the requirements for a provisional application are exactly the same for a non provisional. When we work on provisionals for clients in our firm, we like to do as good a job as we can possibly do. Understanding that the clients are expecting these to be done you know more quickly and more efficiently and at lower cost than a non provisional. And so we kind of run down the middle of that road. I have not seen a whole lot of litigation in which the difference between the level of preparation of a provisional versus the non provisional that gets filed from it is challenged but. The potential is there, so again we like to do the best provisional that our budget and time will allow.

Speaker 2 11:24
And you made a good point about filing additional successive provisionals during that year. From the time you filed your first provisional, so i do valuations and it impresses me when I’m looking to determine the value of a patent family if there were a number of provisionals filed relative to the eventual issue patent umm right and so, yeah, so the provisional lets you do that. And again, once you once you file the nonprovisional, if you’re taking that forward internationally, you’re kind of locked into that disclosure. I want to back up my slides a little bit it seems. I jumped. Ok, whether or not to file. protection novelty. Ok. We talked about the grace periods. Provisional, nonprovisional. Ok, good. So the international filing, where’s the first filing going to happen is typically in the country where the headquarters is located. What happens then? If you the first filing, whether it’s provisional or not, gives you a priority date. And that sets a clock ticking. If you want to go abroad, you can save the priority date if you file within one year. For utility application, if you’re looking at a design that cuts down to six months, you only get six months to do that. And this is this is under an International Convention known as the Paris Convention, which went into effect in the eighteen hundreds. But that 12 months can be a big burden, especially for smaller companies, considering that the cost of going into each country that they want to file in is going to be substantial. And thus the patent cooperation Treaty system was invented. And under that system, within that initial one year, instead of having to go to all the countries you want to get into, you make one filing. And with that, all the participating countries will honor your priority date, your initial filing date, as long as you then proceed to do all their local requirements including paying those fees within 30 months from that initial priority date. So it buys you 18 extra months during which you know. Product development and getting customers and getting on market that can happen. You can generate some income to finance these other filings and it’s a great tool and the vast majority around last time I looked I think it was about 80 % of all filings that happen from one country to another are done through the patent Cooperation Treaty.

Speaker 2 14:34
How many countries are members of the PCT?

Speaker 1 14:39
I lost count. It was like 157.

Speaker 2 14:42
Almost all the countries you’d want to file it. Are there any major countries that you know that are logical places to file in that are not part of the PCB?

Speaker 1 14:53
Every major industrial country with a decent economy is a member of the PCT. Thank you umm. Another PCT structure works like this. There is what they the PT system has, what they call a receiving office. And receiving office is a place where you submit the application in a form that’s acceptable for the PCT process and. The office has to be equipped to examine these applications for, you know, formalities and also to communicate well with the International Bureau. Many, if not most, of the participating countries. Also serve as a receiving office. So for example in the us patent offices are receiving office. We can file our national applications here, but we could also file our PCT applications in the US Patent Office. That gets communicated to Weibo, which then communicates with all the other participating countries.

Speaker 2 16:08
So what does WIPO? What’s the connection between PCT and WIPO?

Speaker 1 16:15
Wipo is the authority that administers these applications. So you know they set up agreements with the participating countries. Here’s what you have to do to be a member. Of the pipe and cooperation treaty and you know here’s how things go and so on. Whether or not you are particular country you can serve as a receiving office or not and what. There’s another office that’s involved that gets associated with receiving offices and that’s called the International Searching Authority. And when applicants submit their applications, they choose not only, you know, whatever receiving office that they’re going to use, but also they designate the searching authority that will look at the claims and find some prior art umm. Ok, so when you file the application that way. You have the, you have access to every all 157 of the participating countries. So that’s a decision that you don’t have to make. You know, in that first 12 months. And I’ll mention this, it’s a little bit different when you when you talk about international filings for designs. That goes under a different International Convention called The Hague Convention. And The Hague filings are you actually have to go down the list and check off the countries you want and pay for those designation fees when you file? Now those fees aren’t quite as hefty as PCT, you know, utility application filings. So I guess that’s the, that’s the difference there umm. And with your with your 12 month PCT filing if they’re you do have interest, if your client has interest in countries that don’t participate in the PCT you’ve got to file there as well that’s I don’t think I’ve ever seen that. But you need to be aware of it because once you lose that priority date on everything you’ve done, everything that gets published after that is potentially priority, you know can defeat the novelty in that country. We had talked about, you know, this strategy of actually getting into the national stage in various countries. How do you choose? And so at the bottom of this slide, I put the basic considerations, you know you’ve got to look at clients, got to look at where they want to do business and where their competitors are likely to do business and take away from theirs whether it be by having a customer base there or maybe that’s where they would do their manufacturing. Ok. And they and they do a lot of heavy export from any particular country? You know, so when you look at a list of the hundred and fifty seven, you don’t need to go to all hundred and fifty seven. It’s rare that all of them are commercially significant to your client umm. And there’s also budget considerations and especially with the smaller clients, I say, look, you know, you could pick one or two or three. You know, you’ve got the US, you can pick Europe as an entire economic region and maybe one or two other big countries. And you know if your patents worthwhile and the inventions well accepted. You’ll do well and you can generate funds and maybe file more broadly later. You don’t have to bank bankrupt the company on that on their first filing umm. Now we submit applications and there are some limitations. When the applications get submitted and it gets sent to whatever searching authority you’ve designated. They will look at prior art and come back with a basic indication of whether the claims look like they might get patentable or be patentable or not. And there’s a decisions on what to do about that if it comes back with a decision that says now it looks like it’s it lacks novelty or maybe it lacks an inventive step. In other words, the claims seem seem to describe something that’s that would be obvious to one of ordinary skill in the art. Sometimes, depending on how aggressive and how thorough the patent attorney is in drafting the claims, you know the searching authority will look at it and say, you know, you really asked us to search more than one had mentioned here. And you only for the basic filing that you only get a search on one invention. And they’ll set aside some of some of the claims on a theory that they call, you know, lack of unity of invention. Now in the PCT you get the option of, you know, paying for a further examination at that point. Something similar will happen in the in the US national stage. We call that a divisional requirement. But in the US, you don’t get to examine those same claims in the same application. You’ve got to file a new refile, the application to separate out the claims to the second or third invention, whatever that is umm. If the search authority comes back with an opinion that says, you know, we don’t think that the claims define patentable subject matter, this is a determination that’s not binding on any of the of the participating offices, but it does carry persuasive weight. Ok, so initial decision to be made at that point is what do you do about it? The PCT system lets applicants respond. To this to the search reports by amending the claims. So if you know they maybe they came up with priority that wasn’t foreseen and you know you look at the invention you look at the at this prior art and say you know we can change the claims and get around it. And you can do that and submit those revised claims, get that attached to the application and so that will go to the national stage. With increased with increased chances of getting a patent in all those countries. So on the other hand. It’s it can be an all or nothing. Kind of a bet on those revised claims because you can put them in. You can either decide just to submit those claims revised claims and let them go to the national stage and argue that each country that you know, we think those revised claims should be patentable even over the prior art in the search report. Or you can submit arguments to the PT searching authority and ask them for a further examination. I mean what’s called chapter 2. But that can really be, you know, sort of a big bet because if you submit your best claims on the international stage and the exam and they’re still not convinced that it’s potentially patentable, that message goes out to every country. That you want to go into and you know, you might have a really hard time. You know, getting the claims that you submitted at the international stage unless you further amend them and make them even that more narrow in the national stage. On the other hand, if you if you succeed. Again, these opinions at the international stages are, they carry persuasive weight. And you can do really well because it provides a really good outlook and will justify spending a lot of money on national stage filings.

Speaker 2 24:48
That’s a good point. So I think it would be helpful maybe just to walk through a scenario. So if you don’t mind, let’s say that I come up with an invention today and I have you write a provisional patent for me today. We file it today let’s say. So I have 12 months to file a non provisional in the US or I could file it outside of the US correct under the PCT.

Speaker 1 25:16
Absolutely so.

Speaker 2 25:21
What? What are the pros and cons of filing first in the US or first in PCT and then the second one and the other region?

Speaker 1 25:31
Yeah, one of those has to do with basically getting some feedback on the examination process. The PCT authorities. Tend to have a tighter deadline for doing their searches and coming out with some kind of indication of whether the claims are at least novel. And you can take longer at the US depending on how backlogged the US Patent Office is. And since the US is participating country. You know, you could skip over your initial filing of the non provisional in the US. Just file the PCT off of your provisional and then enter the US national stage 30 months later. On the other hand. The US Patent Office does have a provision for expedited examination. It costs a lot. So sometimes it’s more cost efficient to go on the PCT schedule if you will.

Speaker 2 26:42
So when you file with PCT, they have one of the authorities can start conducting a search pretty soon, prior art search relatively soon, OK, and then the examiners are actually employed by the PCT yeah i don’t know exactly what the employment is, but I expect it’s by then whatever. A national office has been approved to be a PCT search authority. There were lots of them. And you again, you do have an opportunity to choose which one you want to go to among the top five. They handle at least like 80 % of all the applications filed in the world under the PCT. And I actually have a little bit of statistical information I pulled out on that. Let’s see. Well, there was the top five where I think we’re Europe, Japan, South Korea. The US and China. Ok. And among those, Europe was the big winner?

Speaker 2 27:56
As far as conducting searches?

Speaker 1 27:59
Or as far as being the choice of applicants to be a searching authority.

Speaker 2 28:06
Ok. All right. So the PCT you file the PCT, you pay a fee. One of the searching authorities is contracted with PCT will start to do a prior art search. When you submit an application to the PCT doesn’t have to be in multiple languages or. Is English sufficient?

Speaker 1 28:31
Yeah, there are. Languages that are required. The PCT application gets published for international viewing. And there’s a there’s a limited choice of languages that are required there, but most, almost all of the receiving offices let you file, you know, in the application, in the language of the country where you file. So, you know, people in I don’t, I don’t know, let’s say bosnia they can file in Bosnian language, but they would be required to submit for publication purposes of translation into one language into one language or into to multiple languages and English, French and German are the main ones, but yeah.

Speaker 1 29:22
English is one of the official languages. I think. Spanish is. I think there are three and I’m not sure aside from English.

Speaker 2 29:34
You know, French and German maybe, so you just have to find them one of those languages, not all three of those. Is that correct?

Speaker 1 29:43
Right i mean from the US perspective, filing the English is all you need because English is one of the required international languages, you know? yeah.

Speaker 2 29:53
And then how would you characterize the rigor of the examination, I guess after the prior art searches, you know, under PCT auspices or at the USPTO?

Speaker 1 30:07
Yeah again, one of the reasons why, for example Europe is the most popular and why the Big 5 are the Big 5 is because the searching authority staff are so well equipped and well trained. It’s the same people that would file that would examine, you know, European patent applications or US patent, national file patent applications very often you know I’ve seen PCT filings in the US. I went to a US searching authority examiner in the US Patent Office and then when we got to the national stage in the US it was the same examiner. You know and so the conclusion that they came to and then if the national, international stage at the PCT stage of course is very convincing convincing to that same examiner in the national stage.

Speaker 1 31:03
Ok.

Speaker 2 31:05
One of the other considerations that you know you some people strategize over is how fast these officers work. Because it’s good to get feedback, you know, sooner rather than later. And for that, I’ll mention the fact that WIPO actually keeps the scorecard. On all of the searching authorities and it they published a report every year and you can go online and find this so if you know if that’s a concern. You can be selective about who you choose. Ok. I I’ve heard that maybe the European examiners are more rigorous than the US examiners. Being an examiner in Europe is more of a career decision. Stay there for longer and compensation is very good. I think you have to be fluent in at least three languages to be a European examiner. I’m not sure that’s the case in the US when the US a lot of examiners they you know they end up working for a law firm. You know they don’t. They leave after some years. You know, so is that thesis, is there merit to that thesis that the examination is or maybe a little more rigorous and therefore if I’m looking at a patent, I would be more impressed if it was examined by European examiners? Examiners yeah.

Speaker 1 32:39
Yeah, Dave, I think you’re right about the difference just in the nature of the career paths for examiners in the US and in europe the. Standards against which the international examination is done. They’re expressly not the same as the national patentability, which is why the international authorities are not binding on the national authorities umm so. That being said, you know, one of the considerations of choosing a national stage to go into is the local laws on what’s patentable and what’s not. You know, in the US for example software inventions are a lot harder to get patented. Even if you know the international stage examiner says you know, it appears to be novel and non obvious. You might have a harder time in the US than you might have in Europe or Japan for example.

Speaker 2 33:42
So you pay your fees, you have the search done at the PCT examination starts. At some point, the examination is over, right? With what, 18 months or 20 months? You know, something like that maybe. I guess first what happens with publication, you know, what point does it become published? And then? You know, even if the examiner at 18 or 20 months says this is a great application, we we’re going to issue it. It’s not really issued in any country at that point, right, because you have to make a national phase election exactly yeah. The international, the PCT publication of the application is just, it’s just a published patent document, but it’s not a patent.

Speaker 2 34:32
Ok. So like in the US, applications are published usually 18 months after they’re filed. Is there a time period at what, at what point the PCT publishes publications?

Speaker 1 34:49
Fact, I think almost every national country follows that same 18 month rule. And they’ve again, they wipe out published statistics about it every year. And they’re pretty good, like within month 19. Everything gets published OK. So if a client has some published applications at the PCT and the Bill of health is very good at the PCT and they’re going to file in 17 of the member countries on, you know, is it safe to say that most of those are going to be just rubber stamp? Prosecutions in those seventeen countries because they respect the authority, the PCT or will, you know, is there more rigor to those national phase examinations?

Speaker 1 35:43
Yeah. The idea is that the national, I’m sorry, the international stage authority. Saves, saves the work of doing, searching and examining at the at the national stage. So a lot of the times if you get a favorable outcome, you know at the PCT level things are looking pretty good almost everywhere you go. It’s on the unusual side for national patent examiners to you know go the other way. But that can happen sometimes, you know, if the examiner happens to be aware of prior art that the International authority missed, or if you know it’s the nature of this invention is something that simply doesn’t work in that country. Like I mentioned, for the US, software diagnostic testing on the medical side can be more difficult than the US than elsewhere. Some and business methods, you know, don’t fly in the US.

Speaker 2 36:54
So let’s say that if I have my PCT application in English and you know, I want to and it got issued, you know everything is good at the PCT. I want to do a national phase filing in Sweden, Bulgaria and so forth. Do I have to pay to translate into all those languages or do they all those countries usually accept one of the primary languages?

Speaker 1 37:21
That’s a great question. One of the big costs that gets deferred through the PCT is having to submit translations that match the national requirements of all the countries you want to go into. That’s why that extra 18 months is just it’s so useful. You really you’re able to make good decisions about whether it’s a good investment or not to get those translations umm.

Speaker 2 37:50
Does the PCT charge annuities or is it just the national phase countries that charge annuities?

Speaker 1 37:57
Yeah, no, the PCT head does not have an annuity or maintenance requirement. That happens at the national stage.

Speaker 2 38:04
Ok, so you pay your fee upfront to have your application reviewed at the PCT. And you can just sit there for a year or two after it’s been issued at the PC without paying any extra money until you go to the national phase right i mean actually a PCT application really, I mean from a practical standpoint has limited life. It’s based, it starts with the priority date of the application that you’re relying on. It might be your provisional or it might be your national utility application and then you’ve got the 30 months of that whole time when all this examination of the claims that happens and everything. And at the 30 month mark, sometimes 31 you have to file an enter the national stage in each country at that point the international application. Itself is just a piece of publication that’s out there. It has no the life has ended. There’s nothing more to do with it.

Speaker 2 39:13
Isn’t there something that? if. Sometimes a back fees could be payable for annuities after the patent is issued in Europe. So let’s say it goes through the PCT. We use all of the 30 months we file in Romania. Let’s say it takes a year for the Romanians to approve the patent application. There’s no like backward annuities. I I’ve heard of such a thing. Maybe I’m not giving the right example.

Speaker 1 39:51
Yeah, i don’t know the details of how the EPO or the European patent system works on that. I mean as I recall from some direct European Patent Office filings that we’ve handled you know that can. The maintenance fee is the annuities trigger off the filing date, but I don’t know how it. I honestly don’t know how it interacts with the US PC with the PCT. Finally, dates.

Speaker 2 40:23
Ok. And the EPO? Is that like a supranational body for the European country? So you go to PCT and then? What’s the interaction between PCT and EPO?

Speaker 1 40:40
Yeah. So the European Patent Office is authorized by the countries that participate in Europe, which is again most of them. They who designate that office with the authority to issue a patent that can be enforced in all those countries. So rather than having to file in Germany and France, Spain and so on, Luxembourg and so on. You file in that one European Patent Office, they carry out the examination and they can grant a patent that can be enforced in all those countries. You do have to pay a fee to sort of what they call register the patent in those countries. But overall, it’s a savings. If you have more than say three or four more than a handful of European countries where you want to do business, you save a lot of money by filing in the European Patent Office and letting them make that determination.

Speaker 2 41:41
Well, one could go directly to the several countries that want to file then, right? You don’t have to go through the PCT, you could go could go directly, right?

Speaker 1 41:50
Yeah, absolutely could. But then again you’re scaling it back to the 12 months from your initial filing if you want to preserve your filing date.

Speaker 2 41:59
Ok, so that’s a big disadvantage. Are there any advantages of going directly to the two or three foreign countries that you want to have protection in?

Speaker 1 42:10
Advantages to direct filings? umm. I’d say the only possible advantage would be. That you know you don’t have protection in the country until that country grants a patent. And if you’re, if you have a need for speed, you know. The PCT is a little bit slower actually umm. And there’s also, but there’s also a patent prosecution highway that countries participate in. So you can file, for example, in the US and maybe pay for expedited, you know, examination and hopefully it comes out favorably. And then the participating countries, maybe you only have one or two where you want to file, but if they’re participating in this patent prosecution highway, they’ll adopt the search efforts of the US examiner or vice versa depending on which way. I want to go and that’s that speeds things along considerably. So I would say the advantage to going directly to national stage could be one of speed if that’s a concern.

Speaker 2 43:20
Ok. And like in the US, one can seek interviews with the Examiner. Can one seek interviews with the examiners at the PCT? Or national phases? Is that common outside of the US?

Speaker 1 43:37
Yeah, you know, i’ve never heard of a PCT examiner interview. That’s a really great question certainly at all the national stages and European Patent Office, absolutely. But I’ve never had that. Come up in the in the, in the PCT. I don’t think they do it. I don’t think they do it.

Speaker 2 44:00
Ok. Well, Umm, so I guess the big takeaway is this is very complicated. Patentees, especially people from smaller companies, have a lot on their minds and patents is only part of what’s on their minds. And this gets very complex very quickly. And you really do need to go to an expert like Fred’s space to help you with this. Somebody already knows all the rules you don’t want to have to go through this learning curve by yourself.

Speaker 1 44:35
And when it when it comes to, you know, the transition to the national stage, we have existing relationships with law firms that have lots of experience in this all over the world. So we, you know, we can go step by step and make sure everything that goes as well as it should.

Speaker 2 44:51
Yeah, that’s a good point. So going to a firm like Dilworth IP, you have the relationships, I I’d imagine for the translators, for the foreign attorneys all over the world that can make sure the foreign filings are going at pace and there’s a lot that could fall through the cracks. So it’s probably not safe for an inventor or entrepreneur to try it himself, you know, having somebody like you can manage. The whole process and actually save money, but I’m sure, you know, you probably have better rates than I would get if I were to try to have somebody translate my patent into Romanian or have you yeah and in fact again it’s a question of knowing who to go to. You know there are. Specialists that you know who specialize in translating, you know, technical documents for patent purposes, as opposed to someone you might just, you know, find on the Internet yeah you.

Speaker 2 45:54
Have people we work with. Well, great. So Fred’s Smith, we really appreciate you’re spending a lot of time with us and educating us as much as possible. This is very difficult subject, but you did a great job of explaining this and answering all my questions. Hope I didn’t annoy you too much with all the questions, but we’ll make your contact information available and people that need assistance with a international patent filing strategy. Feel free to turn to Fred Space and his colleagues at Dilworth.

Speaker 1 46:27
Thank you, Dave. This has been a pleasure. And it’s been it was an honor. I I’m really. Pleased and flattered that to be invited to talk on your podcast and I’ll be happy to. We’ll be happy to help out anyone that comes to us through the questions on this great thank you.

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