Below is a list of some of the advantages of a prior art patent search:
(1) To determine if a patent can be obtained to protect a large investment in development and marketing of the invention, while waiting for the Patent Office to grant a patent.
(2) To avoid investing time and money in preparing a patent application without novelty.
(3) To provide background information about the field of technology for the person writing the patent application.
(4) To determine which components of the invention are novel, needing detailed description.
(5) To obtain more technical information to improve or refine the invention.
(6) To determine the economic value of the invention.
(7) To obtain proof of non-obviousness to persuade the Patent Office to grant the patent.
(8) To tailor the patent application to distinguish it from the prior art to obtain a patent.
(9) To determine which invention features are novel to emphasize for the Patent Office.
(10) To persuade potential licensees that the invention is likely to receive a valuable patent.
(11) To determine the actual scope (large or small) of what has been invented.
(12) To make a stronger patent by finding patents that could be used to challenge it in the future.
(13) To enable a petition to “make special” to accelerate examination and speed up the issuance of a patent to allow the patent applicant to go after infringers for damages.
(14) To determine if the invention will infringe in-force patents, and the identity of the owners.