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QLD Company Used My Invention - Can I Still Apply Patent?

Discussion in 'Intellectual Property Law Forum' started by Peter6, 3 September 2015.

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  1. Peter6

    Peter6 Well-Known Member

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    I have an invention and I exposed it to a company during the time to explore commercialization with the company. The company used the invention in its product this year. Do I still have the right to apply a patent on the invention to protect my invention? Or it is too late?
     
  2. Sophea

    Sophea Well-Known Member

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    Its unlikely that you could patent an invention that is already in use, even if you are the inventor. A requirement of a patentable invention is that it is "new" and not in use. If someone is already using it, its in the public sphere and not new anymore.
     
  3. Peter6

    Peter6 Well-Known Member

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    If it is an unauthorized use, is it a different case. is it right?
     
  4. Sophea

    Sophea Well-Known Member

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    It depends how they got the information. If you had dealings with them on the understanding that the information was confidential or you had a non-disclosure or non-circumvention agreement with them you may have recourse against them for breach of those duties. However in the absence of any of those, it will be difficult to prove to a court it was your idea that they stole, and if an innovation is not patented then there is no real property in an idea and no way of proving its your original idea in any event without going through the patent application process.
     
  5. Peter6

    Peter6 Well-Known Member

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    After I exposed my invention to the company, the invention was used by the company in its product. In the court, do you think it is the company to provide evidence to defend on that it get the idea from somewhere else rather than misuse my confidential information or like what you said I have to prove that it is my original idea by going thought the patent application process?
     
  6. david craker

    david craker Active Member

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    Peter6, it was just an idea when it was disclosed and ideas are worth nothing unless protected first and, in this case, you clearly did not patent it?

    No one cares about who used an idea first if it was not protected and not recorded. Did you have them sign a non-disclosure and did they sign to say they would use the idea with you? How did you know they had not already had a similar idea in action for years before you, can you prove that?
     
  7. Peter6

    Peter6 Well-Known Member

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    David, it is not just an idea and it is part of the solution I provided to the company during the verification of my solution. They have asked me to explain it to them and they never said that they have developed the same idea already themselves during that time.

    I think if they say now they had the idea before I showed them mine, do you think the company would provide evidence to say that they have similar ideas?
     
  8. david craker

    david craker Active Member

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    Who asked you to present to them, did you offer or did they engage in a contract to troubleshoot or was it simply you telling them first?

    Generally, I have had companies present at meetings with investors and not disclose their development as a matter of protecting their inventions and products as well and if you did not ask, they will not disclose. They will state is is not an option to discuss their sensitive info.

    Exchange docs first then worry about the egos..

    I think the horse has bolted and if it is common knowledge it is not patentable. You could have registered designs and copywritten documents and dated them and even had them notorised by a JP or similar but in Australia, it is first to file and in the US it is first to prove their invention. If you did not file, all over red rover.
     
  9. Peter6

    Peter6 Well-Known Member

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    David,

    I had an oral agreement with the company to commercialise my solution if my solution is proved to be better than its own solution. I provided the solution for that purpose and they know it is confidential.

    There is no formal agreements, but email discussions on what is going on can prove that we were in the process to verify my solution for commercialisation .
     
  10. david craker

    david craker Active Member

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    Oral is not that good an agreement to enter into unless you record it all and ask the other party to agree to a comment with the description of what they are and what they agree to with the agreement and record it at the same time like the police do. Anyway, better luck next time. Forewarned in future.
     

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