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Engineering

What is a Patent?

Merriam-Webster defines patents as: 1: an official document conferring a right or privilege. 2a: a writing securing for a term of years the right to exclude others from making, using, or selling an invention. b: the monopoly or right so granted. c: a patented invention.

Like copyright, a patent grants the rights to the property to the inventor. Patent terms can vary internationally, but generally in the United States the term lasts 20 years from the patent filing date. Patent types include utility, design, and plants.

Find Patents

Introduction to Patent Protection

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