August 4, 2004

Inventors, Take Note

If you are an inventor on a patent, when you finally get around to signing and faxing the declaration back to your lawyers, feel free to send a confirmation email.

But don't say, "Oh, and by the way, Bob (inventor 1) and Jan (inventor 2) haven't finished reviewing the application. They should be able to get around to it sometime next week."

Why? Well, the DECLARATION is a statement by the inventor(s) that says lots of things about the invention and the patent application like, "yup, that's my invention" and "yup, that's how it works." In order to say this, the declaration starts with a one sentence paragraph which basically says, "We, the undersigned inventors have reviewed the application."

So, if after you've signed the declaration you send me an email that says, "we didn't actually read the patent application yet," it doesn't matter that you plan to do it in the next few days. Now, I've got to be an annoyingly anal lawyer type and send an email back that says, "please re-execute the docs when all inventors have read the application. It would be great if you could try not to contradict the statements you're signing. Thanks." Only I have to write a nicer email, which takes more time, which I then have to bill.

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