Friday, March 8, 2013

Patent Resources - The Numbers

Patents have lots of numbers.  These resources will help you figure out what all these numbers mean.  The numbers can also help you figure out the "vintage" of a patent.

Patent Numbers By Year - A table that shows the starting patent number for each year.  This will help you get a rough idea of when a patent is granted.

Application Series Numbers - The series number is the first two digits of a patent application number.  Until recently the series numbers were the same for a long period of time.  As the number of patent applications accelerates, the series numbers are changing more quickly.  Application series numbers also help you know the type of patent application.  Applications that start with 60, 61, and 62 are provisional applications.  Applications starting with 29 are design patent applications.

There is also a link to a list of patent application numbers by year.  It is also helpful for figuring out the vintage of a patent and broad estimate of the filing timeframe when you don't have access to the patent documents themselves.

Check out our Words, Numbers, and Resources links to help you find information that make patents easier to understand.