Keeping your clients happy is imperative to running a successful patent law firm. After all, clients are the lifeblood of any service business. They are a source of revenue, reviews, and referrals that lead to having plenty of patent prosecution projects in the future. That being said, patent prosecution is unpredictable in a number of ways, and it is often dependent on circumstances that are out of a patent professional’s control. Placing additional emphasis on those factors that are in your control can help you mitigate common client complaints and gain the favor of your clients for long-term success.
Patent Complaint #1: “Patent Prosecution Was Too Expensive”
The costs of drafting, filing, and prosecuting a patent application are often quoted as broad price ranges because prosecution expenses can vary wildly. After all, each patent application requires a different amount of effort pre-filing, and, once filed, costs depend largely on the types and amounts of correspondence that are required with the assigned patent examiner (point of reference: a response to an examiner’s office action costs roughly $3,000, on average). Utilizing patent drafting software can result in the submission of higher-quality patent applications that are free of errors and are less likely to lead to costly office actions. Even when office actions are received, sophisticated patent drafting tools, such as LexisNexis PatentOptimizer®, have the ability to help draft office action responses based on arguments that were successful with the USPTO in the past―saving time that patent professionals would otherwise spend drafting from scratch, and saving their client’s money.
Patent Complaint #2: “The Patent Process Took Too Long”
Not surprisingly, the amount of time a patent application spends in patent prosecution is largely dependent on correspondence with the assigned patent examiner. Every office action issued by a patent examiner requires time to assess and to respond to, and then, after a response has been submitted, it could be months before additional USPTO correspondence is received. In addition to expediting the patent drafting phase, patent drafting tools impact the overall length of patent prosecution by making sure that your patent application has little to object to.
Patent Complaint #3: “My Patent Lawyer Made Too Many Mistakes”
Although patent rejections and objections are not always the fault of the patent prosecutor, patent professionals often take the blame whenever clients see a setback that could have been avoided. While patent professionals have little control over what a patent examiner has to say about the merits of a patent application, such as whether it is novel or nonobvious, submitting a clear, well-planned, and well-reviewed patent application to the USPTO can help to avoid objections and Section 112 rejections. Patent drafting tools like PatentOptimizer® check patent applications for avoidable errors, consistency, cohesiveness, and many other citable offenses. Your patent applications will be in much better shape than before, and all that will be left for your patent examiner to evaluate will be the patentability of the underlying invention.
LexisNexis® IP is dedicated to keeping you and your clients satisfied. LexisNexis patent prosecution tools are designed to reduce human errors and produce high quality work product. As patent counsel, patent drafting tools enable more efficient prosecution, and help to gain the favor of your clients.