Inventors often want to know if they are guaranteed a patent. Or does my law firm somehow guarantee that they will be issued a patent (or refunded some or all of their money if their patent application is refused).

Inventors are not guaranteed a patent.

The US Patent Office does not guarantee that a patent will issue for every application filed. Nor does the US Patent Office issue refunds if a patent application is denied. To the contrary, they charge more fees to continue examination after a Final rejection. Even if the Examiner makes a mistake, the US Patent Office will not issue a refund. The US Patent Office only issues refunds in limited circumstances. Read the USPTO Refund Policy.

So why would a law firm guarantee a patent will issue?

Perhaps there are some patent law firms that will offer a full or partial refund if your patent application is denied. However, I am not aware of any that do. My law firm does not.

Am I being greedy? No, my law firm is a business. I get paid to help you prepare and file patent applications with the US Patent Office. It takes my time and effort to do this work.

Law Firms are not Inventor Insurance

When you work with a law firm, you are hiring a patent attorney to provide services, regardless of outcome. If a law firm guaranteed you would be issued patent, first, the law firm would only file patent applications for inventions they were willing to take a risk with. Just like car insurance won’t insure someone with a lot of accidents. This would result in many inventors being turned away from possibly patenting their invention.

Second, the law firm would charge a lot more to do the same work. The law firm would have to hedge its bet, so-to-speak. For every refund the law firm offered, it would have to make that back on the patents that did go through to issue. So for those, the applicant would have to not only pay for their patent application, but for the failed applications.

Is that fair? No. That’s why (at least at my law firm), patent law firms do not guarantee that a patent will issue for your patent (or issue a refund if a patent application is rejected).

Visit our online patent law firm to learn if we can help.

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