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Editorial Standards - Publications and Citations

Maintain Separation

When using works provided by the USPTO, you must do so in a manner which does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by the USPTO for your enterprise, site or publication.

Proper Citation

It is considered a good practice, both academically and editorially, to properly credit the source of any materials not authored by you. You may credit any materials obtained from the USPTO to the

  • United States Patent and Trademark Office and/or
  • or
  • webpage address)

Use of USPTO Seal

The USPTO does not authorize the use of either its seal or logo on any other websites.


Copyrights are administered by the Copyright Office, a division of the Library of Congress. Copyright law (17 U.S.C. § 105) states that all materials created by the United States government are in the public domain. However, there are restrictions on use.

Anyone incorporating a work of the U.S. government into a copyrighted work should be aware of 17 U.S.C. § 403. This section requires a copyright notice to contain a statement identifying what portions of the work consist of a work of the U.S. government. Failure to do so could result in loss of copyright protection for the entire work.

WARNING: Not all materials on our website were created by the U.S. government . Some have been published by permission of the creators, and that permission is not generally transferrable. Please contact us regarding copyright status before publishing or reselling any documents having outside authorship or any images contained on the webpages for this site.


Patents are published as part of the terms of granting the patent to the inventor. Subject to limited exceptions reflected in 37 CFR 1.71(d) & (e) and 1.84(s), the text and drawings of a patent are typically not subject to copyright restrictions. The inventors' rights to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling the invention throughout the United States or importing the invention into the United States for a limited time is not compromised by the publication of the description of the invention. In other words, the fact that a patent's description may have been published without copyright restrictions does not give you permission to manufacture or use the invention without permission from the inventor during the active life of the patent.

See MPEP§600 - 608.01(v) regarding the right to include a copyright or mask work notice in patents.

CAUTION: There are instances where trademarks may be embedded in patents as part of the drawing, particularly for design patents. There are also instances where a portion of the text or drawings of a patent may be under copyright. You should consult an attorney regarding these potential trademark and copyright issues. The USPTO will not assist in determining if a potential trademark issue or copyright issue exists for a particular patent.


Trademark images are published by the USPTO for public information dissemination purposes in accordance with the law. If you wish to use a trademark obtained from our records, you must do so in accordance with the individual licensing policies of the marks' owners. The USPTO will not assist in contacting trademark owners or arranging and managing licensing agreements.

Is there a question about what the USPTO can or cannot do that you cannot find an answer for? Send questions about USPTO programs and services to the USPTO Contact Center (UCC). You can suggest USPTO webpages or material you would like featured on this section by email to While we cannot promise to accommodate all requests, your suggestions will be considered and may lead to other improvements on the website.

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Last Modified: 8/13/2013 1:48:21 PM