Patent and Invention Help Forum

Public Disclosure

Public Disclosure
« on: April 20, 2022, 03:06:32 PM »
I would like to file a provisional patent application for my invention:  a machine for inspecting external surfaces of cylindrical parts for defects in a production environment.  However, I am not sure when the one-year grace period of public disclosure begins.  My company accepted an order to develop such a machine and delivered it on 2/5/21 to a private customer.  While on the customer site, the machine was tested and refined (changed somewhat).  The machine was then put into production on 6/24/21.  My company had not advertised the machine or disclosed it to the public until we created a website for that purpose on 5/23/21.  Certainly, we made a public disclosure then.  I am not sure if the delivery of the (unproven) machine on 2/5/21 constitutes public disclosure or not, since the delivery was the result of a private transaction between my company and the customer.  My company did not have a non-disclosure agreement with the customer.  My basic question:  "Was public disclosure made on 5/23/21 (website) or 2/5/21 (delivery)?"

Brad

  • Patent Agent
  • *****
  • 1947
  • Owner of PatentFile, LLC
    • View Profile
    • Patent File
Re: Public Disclosure
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2022, 08:46:39 PM »
In your case the "on sale bar" may be more relevant.  You only have one year from your first sale or offer for sale to get your patent filed:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On-sale_bar

If I remember correctly, even secret or non-public sales can still count against you. 

In your case you may need to think of some new improvement or new feature that was not part of the original sale and file a patent that focuses on the new/improved machine with the new feature.   Ideally you can still get that patent approved but the risk/downside is that your original machine (without the new improvement) can still be made and sold my your competition. 
My free patent template: https://patentfile.org/free-provisional-patent-template/

Hire Me:  https://patentfile.org/packages/

Disclaimer: The information on this site is not legal advice and is not a substitute for an attorney or a law firm.  You should seek legal counsel for legal questions.

Re: Public Disclosure
« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2022, 11:08:47 PM »
Thanks for your quick response and suggestion, Brad.  Much appreciated!

 

Menu Editor Pro 1.0.2 | Copyright 2014, Matthew Kerle