US Patent Term (Expiration Estimation)

It can be somewhat tricky to accurately estimate when an issued US patent should expire. Nowadays, there are plenty of software solutions that automatically perform this calculation so you don’t have to. For example, AcclaimIP provides the calculated patent expiration date. But if you do not have access to such a solution, fear not — you need not calculate the expiration manually. The USPTO provides a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet called “Patent Term Calculator” with associated instructions — you just need to find the indicated information and input it into the spreadsheet to have the expiration date calculated.

According to the USPTO:

The United States Patent and Trademark Office does not calculate expiration dates for patents. In response to patent owner and public inquiry, the USPTO is providing a downloadable patent term calculator as a resource to help the public estimate the expiration date of a patent. The calculator can be used to estimate the expiration dates of utility, plant, or design patents. The calculator contains prompts to enter specific information related to the patent in order to help in estimating expiration dates. [Link]

Stupid Patent of the Month

If you haven’t already run across the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Stupid Patent of the Month “award,” I can recommend checking it out so you can be entertained by each month’s winner. The EFF even has a “Mark Cuban Chair to Eliminate Stupid Patents”. The most recent month’s selection for Stupid Patent of the Month is US 9,069,648, which the EFF outlines as follows:

The patent describes sending “motivational messages,” based “on the current or anticipated activity of the user,” to a “personal electronic device.” The patent provides examples such as sending the message “don’t give up” when the user is running up a hill. The examples aren’t limited to health or exercise. For example, the patent suggests sending messages like “do not fear” and “God is with you” when a “user enters a dangerous neighborhood.” [Link]

US9069648, Fig 8
US9069648, Fig 8

eBook “Patent Mining Searches”

I have published an eBook titled “Patent Mining Searches” — it’s available via Amazon.com for any device via Kindle. It’s available for free via Kindle Unlimited.

“Patent Mining Searches” is intended for patent searchers, analysts, and researchers who mine for relevant and valuable patents.

“Patent Mining Searches” is a go-to quick reference, and the book explains:

  • types of patent searches
  • mining search processes
  • mining search tips
  • use of metrics in mining searches
  • search and analysis tools

Patent Mining Searches eBook