Frequently Ask Questions

Intellectual Property Questions


What is intellectual property?

Intellectual property or IP refers to inventors, artistic and literary works, designs, symbols, images, and other creations. It is protected by patents and trademarks to allow inventors to earn recognition or benefit financially from what they create or invent.

What is a patent?

A patent is a right that the federal government grants to an inventor to permit them to exclude others from making, selling, or using their invention for a certain period of time.

What is a trademark?

A trademark is a unique symbol, word, or phrase that is used to represent a business or its products.

How do patents and trademarks differ?

While a patent protects a new and non-obvious invention, a trademark protects the branding associated with a certain product or service.

What is a trade secret?

A trade secret is any information that isn’t generally known yet gives a business a competitive advantage.

What is a non-disclosure agreement?

Non-disclosure agreements or NDAs are contracts where one party agrees not to disclose certain information. They are used in essentially every industry and are one of the most effective ways to protect trade secrets.

How do I find out if my invention already exists?

A “patentable” invention is one that is novel, useful, and not obvious. Our team can conduct a search to determine whether or not your invention has already been brought to market.

Do I need to do anything to protect my patent?

Once you have a patent, you’ll be required to pay maintenance fees to the federal government for 3.5 years, 7.5 years, and 11.5 years from the date the patent was issued. In addition, if infringement occurs, it is your responsibility to stop it by working with an experienced IP attorney.

Alloy Patent Law Questions

What areas does Alloy Patent law serve?

While we have a physical presence in Seattle, we are pleased to offer top-notch legal services related to intellectual property to clients in any part of the United States. Regardless of whether you live in San Diego, Minneapolis, Detroit, Dallas, Portland, or anywhere else, you can count on our legal team to help.

How does Alloy Patent Law stand out from other IP law firms?

Alloy Patent Law focuses on the needs of individual investors and small businesses. This allows us to offer the highest quality services at the very best prices.

Why should I hire Alloy Patent Law to file a patent?

The truth is that patent applications are complex and often beyond the capabilities of an individual who is not familiar with IP law. If you’d like to ensure success when filing for a patent, our firm is an invaluable resource. We can increase your chances of obtaining full value for your concept and guide you through every step of the filing process.

What can I expect to pay if I work with Alloy Patent Law?

We’re pleased to offer exceptional intellectual property law services at competitive fees. Since we are a highly specialized practice that is selective in the clients we work with, we are able to beat traditional IP firm pricing by 30% and general practice firms by 45% or even more. Check out our pricing page for more information.

Does Alloy Patent Law offer free consultations?

Yes! Even if your invention is not quite ready, we highly recommend scheduling a free, 30-minute consultation with us. Our legal team can provide you with valuable advice on how to move forward with your idea, regardless of whether or not it involves filing a patent. For a free consultation, call us at 206.899.6980 or fill out our convenient contact form.