Does a Provisional Patent Need Patent Claims?

Posted by Michael Shimokaji | Aug 23, 2017 | 0 Comments

QUESTION: Should an inexperienced person filing a provisional patent application just leave out the claims (as allowed), or is it better to add at least one claim that is very broad in scope? What is the benefit of putting a claim in a provisional patent since claims can be totally amended later during the non-provisional application? For example: I want my eventual claim to be as broad and powerful as possible, and I'm pretty sure my claim can cover all sorts of variations of what I want to make, but I'm not positive if any of these many possible variations have been made before. If I attempt to make my claim to cover every variation am I shooting myself in the foot by not being specific enough, or can I totally change the claim to be more specific later if needed when I working with an actual patent lawyer for the non-provisional? Care will be taken to make a very detailed description of different embodiments in the provisional application.

About the Author

Michael Shimokaji

Michael’s expertise includes the strategic development of patent and trademark portfolios. He identifies those patents and trademarks that are valuable to his clients by providing them with a competitive advantage. Then, Michael obtains patent and trademark registrations in the US and abroad.


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