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The two primary forms of patents are the utility patent and the industrial design patent. Both of these patents provide different forms of protection based on the kind of product, mechanism, or invention you want to patent. A utility patent typically applies to inventions with novelty and utility. Industrial design patents, sometimes simply known as design patents, provide protection for the design or look of a product.

Industrial design patents cost between $2,500 and $3,500, depending on the nature of the design. The patenting process lasts between 12 and 18 months. Once it's granted, that registration lasts for 14 years. After that, you'll have to apply again if you want to get further protection.

A utility patent is considered one of the most valuable and the most often served patent. The USPTO estimates that it issues 90 percent of its patents as utility patents. These can cost anywhere from $6,000 to $10,000—significantly more than a design patent. They also take far longer to get. Sometimes, particularly when dealing with a more complex invention, it can take six years to get the patent. Once granted, the registration lasts for 20 years before you have to apply again.

The pricing and patent information provided here is just general information for filing a patent on your own. If you decide to hire a patent attorney, you'll also pay attorney fees. However, a lawyers' guidance may prevent costly patent filing mistakes, since the process can be complex. Visit our patent Center for more help applying for a patent.

This article contains general legal information and does not contain legal advice. Rocket Lawyer is not a law firm or a substitute for an attorney or law firm. The law is complex and changes often. For legal advice, please ask a lawyer.

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