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Patents give you the right to exclude a person or entity from making, using, selling, offering to sell, and importing a patented product or component into the United States. The metes and bounds of a US Patent are the “claims.” Claims define the intellectual territory you regard as your invention. The life of a utility patent is typically 20 years from the date the application was filed with the patent office subject to certain exceptions. The life of a design patent is 14 years from the date of its grant.

A patent that carefully defined an invention’s scope at the beginning of its life may encounter unforeseen technological or patent law changes affecting the middle or latter stages of its life. While no attorney can predict the future, an attorney, especially a patent attorney, cannot afford to practice in the past. At Altera Law Group, our interactive team structure permits us to recognize and implement cutting edge strategy consistent with evolving law and technology. Altera Law Group’s attorneys have responded to legal changes in patent law by continuously refining and modifying their patent prosecution, litigation, and opinion techniques and strategy.

Differences exist between the US and foreign country patent systems. A well-written US patent application may need to be tweaked to satisfy and facilitate its entry into a foreign patent community. Usually, a patent application can be written in a manner to assist the foreign associate working on the application in another country. The reverse is also true. A foreign patent application should be transformed to a US friendly application, and claims rewritten to take advantage of the US prosecution practice. At Altera, we work with our clients to achieve a patent capable of withstanding challenges that inevitably arise in patent litigation. In the event of litigation, our patent litigation team is well equipped to assert or defend against patents in arenas from federal district courts, Federal Courts of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, and in the International Trade Commission. Our team includes experienced patent attorneys who have appeared in jurisdictions across the United States.