Lubbock, TX asked in Intellectual Property for Texas

Q: What prof is needed to be considered a co inventor?

I worked for a company that had an application patent on how to attach a polymer onto sand.

I was instrumental in buying lab equipment to test cps of coated sand. The company had no testing procedures before I was hired. I used my vendor relationships to source polymers to create new coated sand technology. I introduced a new amp polymer to work in brackish water. The product they made would only work in fresh water. I was involved with testing the new product in a lab in Houston. To prove out the new coating. Which opened up a new market to sale the product. I was instrumental in purchasing blending equipment to make finished product. I was involved in the sales process for the first 10 wells we fracked. I was the individual that was on site to work with the Oil and Gas operators employees on the frac site to trouble shoot and make sure the product preformed as sold.

Is this enough to claim CO Inventor rights?

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2 Lawyer Answers

A: All that you described can qualify for co-inventor status IF that is part of the patent.

You may in reality have different patents where you can be co-author.

For example, the process for making the product. The curing or oven process, etc.

Consult with an attorney.

A: The claims of the patent are the key - if someone contributed to an inventive concept in even one claim (typically there are about 20 claims per patent) that person is likely an inventor. Typically, contributing to an inventive concept means that the person helped solved a problem or added something unique and useful to make the invention work, which ended up in the claims. But merely buying materials or making drawings or cutting metal under the inventor's direction isn't enough.

In your list, introducing a "new amp polymer to work in brackish water" sounds like it might qualify as an inventive contribution, but "purchasing blending equipment" sounds more administrative than inventive (but discuss the details of each item in your list with an IP attorney because what may sound like mere instruction-task-completion on the surface might have been key to making the invention work).

Naming proper co-inventors is critical - if someone is an inventor and wasn't named on the patent, or if someone was merely a scribe, family member, or business partner and was named as an inventor (which often wrongly happens because the inventor wants to be "nice" or "fair"), the patent may have validity problems.

Ben Klosowski

Registered U.S. Patent Attorney


220 N. Main Street, Suite 500

Greenville, SC 29601

Tel. 864.351.2468

Fax 866.747.2595

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