Program Administrator: Patent Pro Bono Program


Part 7 of Patent Pro Bono Program Series

Published on Jun 06, 2018

California's inventor assistance program administrator discusses who can qualify for the program and what inventors should do before applying.


Patent Pro Bono Program Series

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We have the pleasure of having an administrator
for a regional patent pro bono program speak

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with us today.

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Hello, my name is Bob Pimm, and I'm the Director
of Legal services for the California lawyers

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for the arts.

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We're the administrator for the California
inventor's assistance program.

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Please tell us your experience as an administrator
and how do you help the local inventor community?

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For the California inventors assistance program
what we do is we screen clients who come forward

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to us who are independent inventors or small
business.

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So who can qualify for the pro bono program?

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This is a very important questions because
many people who hear about pro bono services,

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naturally want to apply to the program.

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But it isn't really suitable for every kind
of independent inventor.

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The most important thing to understand is
that itis really a program designed for people

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of very limited means, and so the starting
point is the federal poverty guidelines for

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an individual.

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For this program, the USPTO decided to take
the federal poverty guideline, the current

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guideline, and multiply it by three hundred
percent and then add four thousand dollars

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per individual in the household.

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But that's just the starting point.

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Certainly, for a Californian inventor's assistance
program we look at a lot more than and then

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just that simple formula, and other regional
programs to also look at more things than

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that as well.

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What should an inventor do before applying to
the program?

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One thing inventors might want to do is take
a look at the resources available on the USPTO's

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website before they begin the application
process.

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There's a lot of resources there -- there is information
about the fees, and they can get a lot of

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information, and their expectations can be
better set and understood about the process.

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If they take a look at those resources that
are there before they begin the process.

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Another thing they can do is contact one of
the regional programs and ask questions before

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they even start the process of doing the application
because the regional programs are there to

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answer questions even before they start the
application.

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So that might be a good thing to do.