An Education In Patent Agents

Usually my blog is filled with junk—my own unsubstantiated observations and conclusions about Johnny Law and a few jabs at lawyers and law students. Since I’m yet to write anything that takes the law seriously, I thought every once in a while I might write something that actually explains the law.

Today’s topic: Patent Agents

Johnny Law is already a patent agent. Lucky for him and a select few of his classmates, people who want to be Patent Lawyers get to take two bar exams-the regular Bar Exam and the Patent Bar Exam. Hence the title of my blog- Wife Behind Bar(s). The Patent Bar Exam is taken on a computer and is a multiple chose test. You just hand over your money a couple of months in advance, wait around for your test date, and sit in a room for 8 hours hoping you don’t fail and have to do it all over again.

Johnny Law passed the Patent Bar last spring, so now he can write and submit patents to the US Patent and Trademark Office. Its so official that you could go to the USPTO website and look him up if you really had time on your hands.

If you’re into history like I am, you might think this stuff is pretty interesting. Thank you Wikipedia for dumming-it-down for me.

The legal basis for the United States patent system is Article 1, Section 8 of the United States Constitution, wherein the powers of Congress are defined. It states, in part:
“The Congress shall have Power … To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;”
The mission of the Patent and Trademark Office is to promote “industrial and technological progress in the United States and strengthen the national economy” by:
• administering the laws relating to patents and trademarks;
• advising the Secretary of Commerce, the President of the United States, and the administration on patent, trademark, and copyright protection; and
• providing advice on the trade-related aspects of intellectual property.

Pretty amazing that the Framers of the Constitution had the foresight to see how important patents are…and now Johnny Law can continue in the spirit of capitalism by charging for his services…(cue evil laughter).

That is, when he’s done studying…only 47 more days until its all over.


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