Patent Counseling & Patent Prosecution


Wagenknecht develops patent strategies to meet business objectives in a global marketplace. Our patent attorneys work closely with C-level executives (e.g. CEOs) to understand their business goals and rely on strong technical backgrounds to assess the competing patent landscape and document inventions. Wagenknecht protects market share for a variety of technologies.

Wagenknecht patent attorneys implement patent strategies using an international approach. International PCT patent applications are prepared using a hybrid US-European format to streamline foreign filings. In addition, our firm works directly with boutique foreign patent law firms having specialties in different technologies to provide value-based representation in most countries.

Wagenknecht’s patent representation includes:

  • Conducting patentability searches
  • Identifying patentable components of complex inventions
  • Determining which patent is best for the specific invention
  • Evaluating a value-based patent strategy to achieve the company’s business objectives
  • Drafting US patent applications and international PCT patent applications
  • Providing freedom to operate (FTO) guidance and providing product clearance documentation
  • Advising how to effectively mark products “patent pending”
  • Creating a competitive position for the future

Patent strategies are personalized for each client and technology.

In some instances, an invention includes a system of multiple patentable components. Wagenknecht helps identify comprehensive patent strategies to protect each invention.

In other instances, the invention is a platform technology that is more dependent on expertise or mathematical relationships rather than a new or inventive step over the state of the art. In such instances, Wagenknecht helps inventors determine whether it may be more appropriate to keep the platform technology secret, and evaluate whether patent protection on resulting products that can be obtained.

In still other instances the invention is a new application of known elements that operate in a superior and unexpected way. In such cases, Wagenknecht guides inventors to establish proper comparisons to further support the inventive step of the invention.

US Provisional Patent Applications are priority documents that establish a priority date for one year.  Within that year a regular US Nonprovisional Patent Application and/or International PCT Patent Application must be filed to claim the benefit of priority to the Provisional Patent Application.

US Provisional Patent Applications may be appropriate when the basis of the invention has been developed but additional time is needed to prepare a formal US Nonprovisional Patent Application.

US Utility Patents are granted for new, nonobvious, and useful processes, machines, articles of manufacture, and compositions of matter; or new, nonobvious and useful improvements thereof.  The term of a Utility Patent is twenty (20) years from filing, subject to payment of maintenance fees.

Wagenknecht seeks to achieve the broadest patent protection possible for an invention while providing strong stand alone value against anyone attempting to make improvements to the original invention.

US Design Patents are granted for new and original ornamental designs embodied in or applied to articles of manufacture.  In other words, a US Design Patent protects the look of an invention.  US Design Patents have a term of 15 years from issuance.

US Design Patents can be combined with federal Trademark Registrations to provide comprehensive protection to ornamental aspects of product design and packaging.  Under this approach, US Design Patent protection  provides market exclusivity while the features acquire distinctiveness in the relevant trade channels.

US Plant Patents are available for new and distinct asexually reproduced plants including mutants, hybrids and seedlings, other than tuber propagated plants or a plant found in an uncultivated state.  The term of a US Plant Patent is twenty (20) years from the filing date.

Wagenknecht regularly files patent applications under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT).  PCT Patent Applications do not grant as international patents themselves but provide a centralized application that can be nationalized in member countries (called national phase) to obtain patents in more than 180 countries worldwide. In addition, the PCT Patent Application receives a preliminary examination report and receives a written opinion as to the patentability of the invention prior to national phase, which can be used to assess the likelihood of receiving a granted patent.

The Hague Agreement is an international registration system for registering up to 100 industrial designs in designated member countries by filing a single international application.

The Hague Agreement provides a cost effective approach to registering designs from US Design Patents.