DANIEL NESBITT | Hasse & Nesbitt
You will need to present more specific facts and details about this situation in order to establish that the design at the national hardware store is in fact your invention, and that the invention company stole your idea. Your best option is to contact a patent attorney.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Devon & Associates | Marcia A. Devon
You should consider bringing a lawsuit for fraud, breach of contract. breach of a confidential/fiduciary relationship, conversion, patent infringement (if you have a patent) and that is "just off the top of my head." Did you have a confidential disclosure agreement with them? Did you file a patent application with the USPTO? Usually those invention companies offer to take care of that for you at an inflated price providing less than competent legal assistance. Consumers should be very aware that these companies are often not acting in their best interest and offer services at grossly inflated prices. Consumers should always inquire as to the track record of the invention company: How many inventions/patents have they been associated with that have made money?
Answer Applies to: California