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Intellectual Property Protection

Intellectual Property (patents, copyrights and trade secrets) protection is imperative. An IP strategy, offensive or defensive, is therefore key to the success of the company. However, IP strategy is often a weak link in startups, because:

  • The responsibility of identifying patentable ideas and articulating them such that they are palatable to an IP attorney is a challenge for an already overextended engineering organization
  • Engineers tend to be modest about their inventions and overestimate the requirements for a patent.

The service that Nif/T provides is that of a Patent Catalyst, where we assist a firm in performing an IP audit, establishing its IP strategy, identifying the IP that requires patent protection, and working with both the firm's engineers and patent lawyers to ensure prompt filing of such IP. In order to facilitate this process we interview the engineers and prepare key documents which we call “Invention Core Description” and "Patent Pseudo Document". The document is in the general format of a patent but written in an engineering orientation such that the inventor can clearly understand and work with the key points to protect. Much emphasis is given in prior art search and in differentiating our clients’ inventions from prior art. Then, we work with a select list of top rate patent legal firms, generally without further interruption of the engineering work.

Invariably, the Nif/T approach:

  • Increases the scope of the protection
  • Reduces the stress on the engineering organization and lowers engineering involvement by 90%
  • Reduces front-end cash expenditures by 80%.

Nif/T does not replace IP attorneys. Instead, Nif/T introduces a phase that precedes drafting patents, and provides a structured way to identify and broaden protectable ideas. The process produces documents that allow IP attorneys to submit the patents much more rapidly and at a reduced cost. We assist the legal firm and our client throughout the entire process of the patent prosecution, including the logistics involved. Our involvement and command of a firm's IP allows us to provide additional assistance in the areas of IP licensing, IP evaluation, and IP negotiation. Our fees are strictly based on success milestones.

Over 400 patents from more than 50 firms have been processed through this system. Over 175 of these have gone through full review by the Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) and the success rate exceeds 95%.


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