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Find Patents

Information includes: search tips, tools and databases, international patents, consultation services, and more.

Consultation Services

Need assistance with your search? Organizations affiliated with the USPTO are available to contact.

About Patents

The United States Patent and Trademark Office issues patents to protect an inventor's exclusive right to profit from his or her own ideas. For a fixed, non renewable period of time, the inventor can exclude all others from making, using, or selling the invention without authorization. To receive a patent, an invention must be new and useful or significantly different from previous inventions of its type.  The government currently issues three types of patents: utility, design, and plant patents. To learn more, see these pages from USPTO:

Patents @ VCU

U.S. Patent Searches

International IP