Phoenix, AZ asked in Patents (Intellectual Property) for Arizona

Q: Can a difference in mechanics of a product keep a company from recognizing that it was my idea 1st?

i have a product design that another company has marketed first. I can prove that I came up with the idea first. The other company's product does the exact same thing in the same way, only I am unsure as to it's inner mechanics making it do so. can that be enough for the other company to not have to recognize that it was my idea first?I, also, have an eco-friendly version that I think this company would be interested in licensing. How to proceed?

1 Lawyer Answer
Peter D. Mlynek
Peter D. Mlynek
  • Patents Lawyer
  • Moorestown, NJ

A: It does not matter whose idea it was. A person gets a patent on an invention, not on the idea. They could have come up with the idea subsequent to you, or they could have just copied your idea, it does not matter, you do not have any rights to protect.

The only way that you could sue them is if you disclosed an invention to them under a non-disclosure agreement, and they violated the agreement.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.