is an exclusive right to the inventor's property. That is, it excludes others from manufacturing, reproducing, and selling your invention
for a set period of time.
There are actually three types of patents, and they are a utility patent
, a design patent
, and a plant patent. Different types of patents last for different time periods. Utility patents, which cover processes and machines, generally last for twenty years. Design patents, which are self-explanatory, generally last fourteen years, and a plant patent, which is for an inventor who has discovered and asexually reproduced any new variety of plants, generally lasts seventeen years. Once the prescribed time elapses, your patent expires, and your invention becomes public domain.Patents don't last more than mentioned, but enough for you to make a fortune and to establish yourself as a leader in the industry, so when the patent does expire, your product will be known and continue to have sales for its quality.
You may also want to have a trademark
. A trademark is a word, name, symbol, or device that is used in trade with goods to indicate the source of the goods and to distinguish them from the goods of others. A servicemark is the same as a trademark except that it identifies and distinguishes the source of a service rather than a product. The terms “trademark” and “mark” are commonly used to refer to both trademarks and servicemarks.
Trademark rights may be used to prevent others from using a confusingly similar mark, but not to prevent others from making the same goods or from selling the same goods or services under a clearly different mark. Trademarks which are used in interstate or foreign commerce may be registered with the USPTO.
There is a lot more info on this. I can also help you find an attorney in your area who is affordable and can help you with this.
Also note that US patent is enforcible in US only, but world patents do exist and can be registered.
Best of luck in your matter. I'm here if you need any more clarification or follow up information.
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