A patent is a document issued upon application by a government which describes an invention as well as creates a legal situation in which the patented invention can usually only be exploited with the authorization of the owner of the patent. Patent drafting practices and requirements differ from country to country. However there are usually three basic requirements to be complied with in the drafting of a patent application.
Firstly, there is a prerequisite that the application should relate to one invention only or to a group of inventions so linked as to form a single general inventive concept. This requirement referred to as unity of invention is particularly significant when claims are being drafted. The first section of the description usually contains two elements. They are the title of the invention in addition to a brief statement of the technical field in which the invention lies.
Secondly, the description should reveal the invention in a manner adequately apparent and complete for the invention to be evaluated as well as to be carried out by a person having ordinary skill in the art. This is of elementary importance since one of the main functions of the description is to present new technical information to third parties. A significant phrase to note in this requirement is a person having ordinary skill in the art. This allows for a simplified description since it can be assumed that the reader will be an informed reader having the background knowledge which makes it pointless to describe every fundamental aspect of the invention.
In the second section the background of the invention is described. In drafting this section the patent representative typically sets out any existing problems or difficulties which the invention overcomes. Any prior solutions to those problems or difficulties should be described preferably in a method which undoubtedly sets out the dissimilarity between the present as well as previous solutions. This section may also explain the purpose of the invention, what the invention sets out to attain. The second section of the description is significant to present a good understanding of the invention and to put it into perspective against the prior art.
Thirdly, for the application to proceed it have to hold claims which settle on the range of the protection. The claims have to be clear and brief as well as entirely supported by the description. This third fundamental prerequisite is significant since the claims are the basis of interpretation of patent protection. It is from the claims that third parties are capable to know what they may do in addition to what they may not do. The claims may not be considerably broader or diverse from that which has been described.
The third section of the description presents a outline of the invention in such terms that it may be voluntarily understood. The patent agent will usually explain the invention first in general terms which correspond to those he intends to use in the main claim. By using this technique the agent can keep away from any disputes that might arise based on differences between the inventions described. This explanation of the invention in common terms is frequently followed by a series of paragraphs which set out dissimilar preferred features of the invention.
In the fourth section of the description two elements are generally found. They are brief description of the drawings and a detailed description of one or more embodiments of the invention. If the invention relates to some form of mechanical object drawings illustrating plan, elevation plus sectional views of that object could be used. Elements of the drawings which are described are numbered in the drawings and these numbers utilized in the description of the embodiment.