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

Q: Have family patents inherited from a will - appear to be innovations at a global scale. Looking past missed royalties.

Family patents include "Grass Cutter," (original lawnmower), Time-controlled release valve (for fire extinguishers and irrigation systems), and medical valve for oxygen tanks. It appears that our family has owned the patents for quite some time and a friend of ours mentioned that we may have missed royalty payments from companies using our patents. Looking for guidance on how we find this out. Have patent numbers and pdfs of full patents if needed.

Thanks in advance.

1 Lawyer Answer
Stephen E. Zweig
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  • Patents Lawyer
  • Los Gatos, CA

A: To start with, you could look these various patents up on Google patents and see which ones have expired, which are abandoned, and which may need maintenance fees. You can do this by looking at .

You can also get some idea of which patents have already been sold or licensed, and which still belong to your family. You can begin this process this by looking up the patents on the USPTO public PAIR website at . Check the "assignments" tab.

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