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Research Guides

Selected Inventor Resources

Main patent information portal at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office website.

Patent Practitioner Home Page (Patent Attorneys and Agents) - U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
This is a searchable index of contact information for attorneys and agents with licenses to practice before the US Patent and Trademark Office. There is also a geographic search available.

Patent Pro Bono Program for Independent Inventors and Small Businesses - U.S. Patent & Trademark Office
The Patent Pro Bono Program is a nationwide network of volunteer patent professionals.  Inventors and small businesses that meet certain financial thresholds and other criteria may be eligible for free legal assistance in preparing and filing a patent application.

Washington Pro Bono Patent Network - University of Washington School of Law
Part of the USPTO's Patent Pro Bono Program, the "Network" is a resource for Washington State low-income inventors seeking counsel, patent attorneys seeking pro bono opportunities and law students seeking mentoring and experience. Please consult their website for more information and application procedures.

Entrepreneurial Law Clinic - University of Washington School of Law
Teams law and business students with pro bono attorneys and business advisors to provide legal and business counseling to technology entrepreneurs, small businesses, social entrepreneurs, non-profits, students, and UW researchers.  Please consult their website for more information.

Inventor and Entrepreneur Resources - U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
This section of the USPTO website is designed specifically for independent inventors, entrepreneurs, and startups.

Inventors Assistance Center (IAC) - U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
The Inventors Assistance Center at the USPTO answers general questions about patent examination policy and procedure, including technical questions about patent forms. - U.S. Department of Commerce
Intellectual property rights information and assistance. U.S. government tools and resources on intellectual property rights (IPR). 

Washington State University Economic Development Assistance University Center
The EDA Center helps inventors and entrepreneurs develop, launch, and refine products and businesses.  One service is the
Innovation Assessment Center at Washington State University.  The Innovation Assessment Center provides evaluation services and market assessments for individuals and small businesses throughout the United States.

Washington Small Business Development Centers
The SBDC is a cooperative effort of Washington State University, other educational institutions, economic development organizations, and the US Small Business Administration. The SBDC offers confidential assistance in technical business affairs and management.

Small Business Administration - Seattle District Office
The US Small Business Administration provides assistance and counseling to entrepreneurs and small businesses. The SBA provides a variety of education and training opportunities as well as technical assistance and information.  In addition to the Seattle District Office, there are a range of SBA offices and partner organizations and agencies across Washington State, the Pacific Northwest, and the US.  The SBA website has a searchable "Local Assistance" page to help locate resources in your area.

Wex - Intellectual Property: Legal Information Institute (LII), Cornell University Law School
Wex is a free legal dictionary and encyclopedia. Wex is a collaborative public access law resource sponsored by the Cornell Law school. The Intellectual Property section of Wex contains articles about patents, copyrights, trademarks and other intellectual property issues.

America Invents Act - Implementation Guide
On September 16, 2011 the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) was signed into law.  This online guide outlines the AIA and provides information about implementation of the Act at the USPTO.  Includes a timeline and guide to effective dates.



While the Library reference service staff is happy to provide assistance with your search, we cannot perform searches, evaluate searches, assist with your application or dispense legal advice.

The University of Washington and its employees are providing a service of an informational nature with no express or implied warranty for results and assume no obligation or liability for damage arising out of the use, or inability to use, the information provided.  Every effort is made to keep this information up to date. However, errors and omissions may occur.

For the most up-to-date information or legal advice, please contact a patent or trademark attorney.