How can I view a patent application? 14 Answers as of February 12, 2013

Seeking to view the patent application of a competing product, which states: Patent Pending, U.S. SN 61/705,026 Cannot find anything in USPTO. Is this application hidden?

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Law Office of Mathew R. P. Perrone, Jr. | Mathew Roy Patrick Perrone, Jr.
If foreign filing in contemplated, the application will be published 18 months or so after filing. Otherwise, it remains secret until or if a patent issues.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 2/12/2013
Mark S. Hubert PC
Mark S. Hubert PC | Mark Hubert
Yes the patent application is held in secret for at least 18 months. After this time unless they have filed a non publication request, it can be viewed in public pairs on the uspto website.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 2/11/2013
Law Office of Kirk Buhler
Law Office of Kirk Buhler | Kirk A Buhler
Patent applications are not published and for the first 18 months after filing the application. The number you provided is for a Provisional patent application that gives the inventor 1 year of patent pending status. After the year the inventor must either file a Non-Provisional application of the original provisional application will go abandoned. Based upon the number I estimate that the application was filed around August or September of 2012. If the inventor files a Non-provisional application it would normally be published about February 2014.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/11/2013
Eminent IP, P.C.
Eminent IP, P.C. | Paul C. Oestreich
This particular patent application is hidden from public access at the Patent Office. The application number you reference is for a provisional patent application. Provisional patent applications are never published and only become available to the public once they are referenced in a subsequent non-provisional patent application. Similarly non-provisional patent applications are hidden and not publicly available until they are published at 18 months from filing date. In fact, the patentee may file a non-publication request for a non-provisional patent application. In that case, the non-provisional patent application is never published and only the issued patent is published.
Answer Applies to: Utah
Replied: 2/11/2013
Ochoa and Associates
Ochoa and Associates | Susan Ochoa Spiering
it is not hidden, but is a confidential record. This is a provisional application, and unless has been converted to a non-provisional, cannot be accessed.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 2/11/2013
    Barton Barton & Plotkin
    Barton Barton & Plotkin | Maurice Ross
    If you can't view the patent application on line, that means it has not been published. Provisional patent applications are not made public, and utility applications remain confidential for 18 months after which they are published. If this application has not been published, you have no right to see it. In these circumstances, it is sometimes useful to attempt to find a European counterpart.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 2/11/2013
    DANIEL NESBITT
    DANIEL NESBITT | Hasse & Nesbitt
    Yes. This is a Provisional Application (the "61" prefix). Given its application number, it was probably filed mid September 2012. US provisional applications themselves are secret and not subject to examination or publication. Ordinarily, a US provisional is not made available to the public for inspection until the 18-month publication of the US non-provisional application that would claim priority to the provisional application. Assuming this provisional is the earliest priority filing date, the publication date would be in mid March 2014.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 2/11/2013
    Michael M. Ahmadshahi
    Michael M. Ahmadshahi | Michael M. Ahmadshahi, Ph.D., Esq.
    That is a provisional application which is not published unless a corresponding nonprovision application is filed. Even then, both the provisional and nonprovisional will be published 18 months from the filing date of the provisional application. However, if the applicant files a Request for Nonpublication, none of the applications will be published until they issue into a patent at which time the patent will be published and available to the public.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/11/2013
    AdamsIP, LLC | Hunter Adams
    You can search U.S. patent applications by going to the United States Patent and Trademark (USPTO) website. However, keep in mind that many patent applications are not available for public viewing until 18 months after filing. Furthermore, some applicants put in a request that the application not be published until the patent actually issues. It is important to have a patent attorney assist you with the nuances of the search and patent law. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 2/11/2013
    Webb IP Law Group
    Webb IP Law Group | Jason P Webb
    If the application has not yet been published (they are typically published 18 months after their filing date) then you cannot view the applications online. In the case of provisional patent applications (which I think the reference you are referring to is a provisional), they are never published online.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 2/11/2013
    Banner & Witcoff, Ltd. | Ernie Linek
    This is a secret filing - as are All Provisional Patent Applications. Based on the Serial Number given - this application was filed in September or October of 2012 - and will remain "patent pending" for one year from the filing date. Before the one-year term expires, the application must be converted to a full utility patent application by filing either a formal US Application or a PCT Application. These applications could then be published at the 18-month anniversary of the original provisional filing. However - such publication can be blocked by the applicant if a non-publication request is filed with the formal US Application and no PCT Application (or other foreign application) is filed. If so, the application will NOT become available until a patent is granted - typically in about 3 years (or more).
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 2/11/2013
    Tran & Associates | Bao Tran
    It is a provisional application so you can't find it. You should get patent application as soon as you can to prevent others from copying you. This is important as we move into the First to File era. I would recommend the use of software from PowerPatent.com called ProvisionalBuilder. A feature summary is at http://www.powerpatent.com/prwelcome THe software helps you organize information, and through your summary description, brings back sample patents in the same field for you to use as examples.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/11/2013
    Shimokaji & Associates
    Shimokaji & Associates | Michael Shimokaji
    It appears that the competing product may be covered by a provisional patent application. These applications are not subject to public inspection in the patent office.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/11/2013
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