What’s a Non Provisional Patent?

by Chris Peil on March 31, 2015

CopyrightDespite having “patent” in the title, a provisional patent does not allow you to obtain one. It does not protect your invention from infringement and should only be used when your invention is first on the drawing table. A provisional patent merely files your invention so that you may claim “patent pending” rather than putting your idea in line to be examined.

Filing a non-provisional patent application is the only way to put your invention in the que to be examined for a patent. An exhaustive formula for your idea is required — ambiguity in any section of the non provisional patent application forces you to give up certain patent rights. Meticulous completion of the following sections is required for a non-provisional patent application.

Title the Invention

In your patent application, you will need to provide a title that is concise, descriptive, and definite. Your title will be associated with your invention and used to encompass the substance of the idea.

Federal Sponsorship

If your project has federal sponsorship, reveal the contractual rights by the United States government.

Disclose Related Applications

If you have previously filed patent applications related to your idea, you will need to reference them. This is your only chance to claim which patents have priority.


In this section, you will essentially be proving that there is a need in the respective art for your invention. Describe the art to which your idea pertains, identify what the art is lacking, and demonstrate the importance of your invention in improving the art.

Brief Summary

In your summary of the invention, you will describe the general essence of what your invention can do. You will describe what you think the idea’s unique qualities are and how it will solve the problems described in the background section.

Detailed Description

In this section, your description should be detailed enough for a reasonably educated person to be able to replicate your invention from scratch, and be able to use it. An acceptable and definite description will present elements including the invention’s structure, how components are connected, precise directions for making the invention, and what materials can be used. It should include the invention’s components and their structures. Be sure to also describe any variations of the invention and ways it can be produced.

Later adding details to your invention will require filing another application, severely delaying patenting (Source: http://www.ipwatchdog.com/2014/05/10/completely-describe-your-invention-in-a-patent-application/id=49497/). Failure to express all aspects of the invention can get your application rejected or later provide loopholes for infringement.

Drawing and Descriptions

Even if you patent does not require drawings, providing them is invaluable. Include drawings on the finished product in addition to showing how the individual pieces fit together, enlisting the help of a qualified patent illustrator. Include concise yet descriptive labels with the drawings.


In your claims section, you will describe the intellectual property you are striving to take ownership of. If you ultimately obtain a patent for your invention, the United States Patent Office will decide your patent rights.

Abstract of the Disclosure

In this section, you will provide a brief description of your invention for public knowledge (Source: http://www.neustel.com/patent-application/patent-application-parts.aspx).

Oath or Declaration

You will sign an oath declaring that you believe you are the first inventor and that the content provided in the application is original.

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