Patent lawyers specialize in the area of law protecting the property rights of inventors. Applying for a patent is a complicated procedure that requires the expertise of a lawyer who is trained to interpret the rules and regulations of the patent process, negotiate contracts, file documents and provide legal representation to inventors.
Patent lawyers are involved in all aspects of law covering patents and the intellectual property rights of inventors. Conducting searches to ensure that an invention has not been previously represented in the public domain and is patentable is the first responsibility of a patent lawyer; following that, he or she drafts, files and prosecutes patent applications on behalf of inventors before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Patent attorneys also provide legal representation in cases of patent infringement, challenges to the license of an invention and appeals to the USPTO.