Q: In 1999 I did sent my idea to virgin, a tube to install on highways for transport. no interest. Now they have hyperloop

Virgin had an announcement "Richard Branson: Got a business idea? Do this with it" they still have: https://www.virgin.com/about-virgin/latest/richard-branson-got-a-business-idea-do-this-with-it

I gave full discription, benefits, etc...

I had letter that they asked for more info, I gave more info. I still have communication, their reference, etc..

Is there something I can do to claim this?

The hyperloop can be used in various fields, transport people, goods, parcels, etc...

Is it worth to bring that to court/do a proposition?

Announce to send yoir ideas, decline them and later create it, does not seem correct way of working (it might that they tried to contact me, I moved seceral times but I doubt that)

(English is not my native language, please ignore vocabular errors)

Thanks in advance

1 Lawyer Answer
Kevin E. Flynn
Kevin E. Flynn
  • Patents Lawyer
  • Chapel Hill, NC

A: The bulk of your question falls outside of patent law issues so I will leave that to others.

I will note one tiny sliver of hope.


1) Your communication was sufficiently detailed to provide information to enable the creating the hyperloop (rather than just suggesting that it would be real nice to have a hyperloop if someone could figure out how to make it); AND

2) A patent application was filed that relies at least in part on your technical disclosure to them;


It may be possible to be added as an inventor of the patent when it issues. Then you would have full rights to make, use, or license rights to the patent without having to share the income with the other party.

NOTE -- if your submission merely echoed the thoughts of many people in the 1990's about how transportation may change in the future and did not add any new technical solutions to the discussion then you have no more right to obtain compensation than the others who were writing on this topic back before 1999.

This combination of facts almost never happens. But it does happen. This would not be a DIY fix. You would need serious help from patent litigation counsel who would sue to get you added as an inventor to the patent.

See e.g. https://www.hdp.com/blog/2019/02/22/complaint-established-sufficient-facts-to-support-claim-for-inventorship/

1 user found this answer helpful

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