What is a Provisional Design Patent Application?

A design patent protects the unique shape, look, and form of a product or process. It allows the owner to exclude others from making, using, copying, or importing a design that is similar to the design claimed in the application.

Because the filing date of a provisional application is not examined, it often costs less to file than a utility patent application. It may also be processed faster.


Provisional design patent applications can be an ideal solution for entrepreneurs who wish to safeguard their invention before investing time and resources into it. These types of applications are more cost-effective than utility patent applications, giving inventors time to assess whether or not their product is ready for market release.

However, these types of applications come with additional costs. You must pay the filing fee for the application itself and then follow up with a non-provisional patent application within 12 months. This additional expense may be worth it if you believe your invention will be successful.

Consider paying an attorney to prepare your application. Doing so will guarantee it is filed correctly and in compliance with USPTO rules and regulations.

You may prepare your application yourself and submit the paperwork to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). If you do this, be sure to include drawings of your invention alongside filing fees – these could be hand sketches or computer generated.

When preparing your application, be sure to include a comprehensive description of your product. Include specifications such as dimensions and shop drawings so the USPTO can quickly understand your invention when you file for full non-provisional approval.

Finally, be mindful of the language you use in your description. This is especially critical if your product is in an industry with many competitors. If your language is unclear, it will likely be difficult to secure a patent for your invention.

Patenting an invention can be a time-consuming and complex process, especially for design patents. The USPTO patent examiners often make multiple rejections which lead to additional legal fees and expenses.

Filing Dates

Provisional design patent applications are an affordable and efficient way to register your invention with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) before you decide whether or not to continue with full patent prosecution. They offer you a filing date for your invention while you assess whether or not to proceed with patent prosecution.

Are you an inventor looking to protect the unique shape, appearance and functionality of your invention? A design patent may be just what the doctor ordered. This type of patent covers any new creation that exhibits an original and distinctive appearance.

The USPTO recommends that a design patent application should include drawings and other information outlining how the invention works or functions, as well as its distinctive features. Doing this will enable you to make an effective case for securing a design patent.

You should also include a comprehensive written description of your invention. This should provide enough detail that even someone not knowledgeable in the field could comprehend what you’ve created. This description will serve as the foundation for filing for non-provisional patent protection later on.

When filing your provisional application for patent protection, it may be beneficial to include drawings and diagrams. Doing so not only helps explain the concept behind your invention more clearly but it can also speed up the patent examination process later on.

The USPTO requires all inventors be listed in a provisional patent application, so make sure all co-inventors are included. This information helps the USPTO determine who actually created the invention and whether they have legal grounds to claim a patent on it.

When you are ready to convert your provisional application into a full non-provisional patent, there is only one 12-month window in which to do so. After that period has elapsed, however, any ideas you had will have been lost forever.


Provisional design patent applications are an excellent way to gain acceptance with a United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) examiner before filing full utility patent applications. Furthermore, this type of application can help you secure investment capital or present your invention to potential partners.

Provisional applications are concise documents that outline a novel product or process and, when needed, provide drawings to demonstrate the invention. They tend to be less costly than full patent applications and can usually be filed without the need for legal counsel.

When drafting a provisional patent application, it is recommended that applicants adhere to the World Intellectual Property Organization guidelines for drafting patent applications. These guidelines aim to make the patent process simpler and quicker.

WIPO recommends that a provisional application should include a specification meeting 35 U.S.C. SS 112, outlining the best mode known for practicing an invention and including drawings as needed to explain it further. It must also identify those inventors who contributed to the subject matter disclosed and be filed along with all required filing fees.

Provisional applications are not examined on their merits, but can still serve as the foundation for later nonprovisional patent applications if all claimed subject matter was included in the provisional. Furthermore, a grantable petition under 37 CFR 1.53(c) (3) can be filed to convert a provisional into a nonprovisional patent application before its one-year expiration date.

Provisional applications can be submitted electronically using EFS-Web or by post. They must include a written description and drawings that adhere to USPTO requirements, along with all required filing fees.

As with all USPTO patent applications, the provisional application should provide a thorough description of the invention and include illustrations as necessary to make it understandable. It should not be overly informal; rather, it should provide enough specifics that someone skilled in the art could create or utilize it successfully.


Exams are a formal way of testing someone’s knowledge, skill, aptitude and physical fitness in various areas. Exams may be written, oral or practical in nature and usually administered by trained examiners who assign a standard pass mark or grade at the end of the test.

Exams in education are assessments designed to determine whether a student has acquired enough information for a certain course of study or training. They can take many forms, such as written exams, on-screen tests and practical assessments – these could include driving a car, speaking another language, playing a musical instrument or conducting a scientific experiment.

Final exams, also referred to as annual or final exams, are tests given at the conclusion of a course of study in order to assess student progress and performance. They usually occur at the conclusion of each quarter or semester but can also be conducted at the end of an entire degree course.

The type of examination administered depends on the subject matter, its degree of difficulty and other factors such as instructional philosophy, class size, school policy and accreditation/governing body requirements.

For instance, an aircraft training course requires a theoretical examination to test a student’s knowledge of basic flight theory, safety procedures, inspections and limitations. This examination must be administered by an accredited examiner with expertise.

It is essential to remember that, unlike utility patents, which require an extensive and time-consuming review by the USPTO, provisional design patent applications do not go through this process. This can be advantageous as it allows applicants to delay examination costs and non-provisional design patent application fees until a decision has been made on the merits of their invention.

Delaying Examination – To delay the time that your patent application enters the examination queue, you must file a non-provisional design patent within one year of filing your provisional application. At this point, your patent application will be placed into an examination queue and if the examiner finds prior art that predates your priority date, you will receive a “notice of allowance.” Alternatively, if they determine your design patent application is ineligible for a design patent, they will issue you with a notice of rejection.