Where can I get help filing for a patent?
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) offers an Inventors Assistance Center (IAC), staffed by experts who can help with some aspects of the patent process , including filling out forms. https://www.uspto.gov/learning-and-resources/support-centers/inventors-assistance-center-iac
What IAC can do for you
- Answer general questions regarding patent examining policy.
- Answer questions concerning necessary formats and items needed for your patent application.
- Assist you with forms needed and with filling out the forms.
- Direct your calls to appropriate USPTO personnel or www.USPTO.gov web pages, as necessary.
- Provide you with general information concerning patent examining rules, procedures, and fees.
- Send you patenting information and forms via USPS mail or facsimile.
What IAC cannot do for you
- Cannot give an opinion as to whether an invention is patentable.
- Cannot provide legal advice or legal interpretations.
- Cannot provide patent searches or other intellectual property research.
- Cannot provide specific line-by-line completion of forms (but can provide directions).
How to Contact the IAC
Hours: Monday – Friday, 8:30 AM – 8:00 PM (ET), except federal holidays
Toll-free: 800-PTO-9199 (800-786-9199)
TDD/TTY customers can dial 800-877-8339 for customer assistance
There are also two Patent and Trademark Resource Centers (PTRC) in Wisconsin:
UW-Madison Wendt Library https://www.library.wisc.edu/wendt/services/patent-trademark-services/
Milwaukee Public Library http://mpl.org/other_resources/patents_and_trademarks.php
PTRC library representatives can:
- Provide access to resources such as PubEAST and PubWEST, examiner-based search systems
- Direct you to information and explain the application process and fee schedule
- Demonstrate how to use search tools to conduct a patent or trademark search
- Show you a directory of local patent attorneys who are licensed to practice before the USPTO
- Offer classes on intellectual property (varies by location)
- Offer assistance on how to do historical research on patents and trademarks
- Show you how to track current research by company or nonprofit
- Help you find assignee information and much more.