A patent is, in effect, a contract agreement with the government whereby the inventor is granted a patent in return for public release of his invention in the form of a printed document. The patent is a limited monopoly for a period of years depending upon the country in which the patent is granted. It does not give the inventor the right to manufacture, use or sell but rather it gives the patentee the right to prevent others from manufacturing, using or selling. An inventor has the right to manufacture, use and sell only, if he is not infringing a live dominating patent. All patented inventions fall into the public domain upon termination of the life of the patent. This means that once the patent has expired, anyone can make the invention without fear of infringement.
KeywordsSubject Matter United States Patent Federal Court Trade Secret Patented Invention
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