Texas has seen an influx of tech giants moving in from outside states, especially over the past year. With affordable real estate and business-friendly tax laws, the Lone Star State, already home to major corporations such as Dell, has become an attractive and lucrative place for HP, Oracle, and Tesla – and new technology startups – to now call home.
Houston, frequently named a top metropolitan area in the country for cultural diversity (by its own Rice University), is itself rich with opportunity for technology companies. Naturally, every business attracts customers with a product or service that provides a distinct benefit or feature – often legally protected from competition by patenting a design or unique mechanism.
Creating and registering a patent is a skill in and of itself. Without the proper knowledge, it can be costly. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office receives over 650,000 patent applications every year, only 300,000+ of which are granted registration. To stand out from the more than 50% that are rejected, the most effective way is to have business-oriented legal counsel at your service.
Lloyd & Mousilli’s patent lawyers in Houston are the attorneys of choice for early-stage startups and technology companies. They have served as mentors and advisors to startups from Rice Ventures, one of Rice University’s incubators.
Lloyd & Mousilli’s legal services, drawing from their wealth of international Fortune 500 business law experience, help clients to efficiently develop a patent strategy that not only results in successful registration but also gives them a competitive IP portfolio that places their products ahead in the marketplace.
The firm’s Managing Partner, Feras Mousilli, has previously served as in-house counsel at Apple & Dell. His expertise is in product development and intellectual property matters – with a commitment to putting the business’s success first, a guiding principle of the firm’s work.
Assisting startups in every stage of the process, from conception to enforcement (and also preparing for litigation), Lloyd & Mousilli patent lawyers emphasize looking at all of the following aspects:
A provisional patent application establishes an early filing date with the USPTO for your invention. While a provisional patent application alone is not a registered patent, it allows you to start marketing your invention as “Patent Pending” right away. (In the United States, commercially-sold products are legally required to denote their associated registered patents.)
After a provisional application, a regular (non-provisional) patent application must be filed within 12 months – a period which cannot be extended.
A design patent protects the unique shape, look and form of a product. If this ornamental design is distinct enough, it is eligible for design patent protection. Design patents are often used in consumer electronic products.
Currently, design patents are granted for 15 years from the date of issuance, and are not subject to maintenance fees.
A utility patent protects the functionality of a product. Eligible inventions solve a common consumer problem in a unique, novel way, and in a manner that is practically useful.
Utility patents tend to provide a broader scope of protection. Unique mechanisms and functions are the fields of technology IP where protection is in the most demand.
Currently, utility patents are granted for 20 years from the date of issuance, and are subject to periodic maintenance fees.
“Intellectual Property is a complex, and frankly intimidating area of law. It is our privilege to assist our clients in navigating legitimate claims from fraud, and creating a strategy to move forward with,” says Managing Partner Feras Mousilli. Dr. Mousilli is a recipient of the Fulbright Scholar award, and is a visiting professor of law in Europe teaching intellectual property and technology law.
Whether you’re just considering patent registration, or you are looking to optimize your existing patent portfolio, it is a must to get the right legal partner for your team before you make any mistakes. Lloyd & Mousilli is known for securing favorable terms for its clients in an efficient manner, and at rates that are sensible for startups and small-medium businesses – “without Big Law fees.”
For entrepreneurs who want to grow their business using patents, Lloyd & Mousilli Houston patent lawyers offer free consultations. Clients can book an appointment online at lloydmousilli.com, or by calling (512) 609-0059.