David S. Alavi, PhD
Registered Patent Agent

Patent Searching

Prior to preparing a patent application, it is often advisable to perform a novelty search of the prior art. I can provide both PTO-based and Internet-based patent search services.

Key Benefits and Considerations


PTO-based patent searching
I routinely used a Virginia-based patent search firm, National Patent Services (NPS), to do patent novelty searches at the PTO search facilities in Arlington, VA. Based on the search request I prepare, NPS consults an Examiner to determine the patent classes and subclasses most closely related to your invention, and then searches those class/subclasses manually. They also perform a keyword search using the PTO on-site database. Typically, the search results will comprise ten to fifteen patents, and I will make recommendations based on my review of the patents found.
Internet-based patent searching
I can do limited searching of patents using the USPTO patent database. These searches are generally less desirable than a PTO-based search for two reasons: (1) the databases only go back to the early to mid 1970s; and (2) NPS searchers are better and more efficient than I am. If a search is desired, I strongly recommend using NPS.


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