Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Changing Assignments

I spend a lot of time in this blog talking about inventors.  However, invention is not the only way to get a patent.   Patent rights are considered property rights and they can be sold or transferred using contracts.  Like deeds or mortgages, patent right transfers, called assignments, need to be recorded with the Assignment Recordation Bureau (ARB) of the Public Records Division of the USPTO.  To record the assignment, a copy of the original documentation is required.  The ARB simply records the assignment.  The ARB does not check the validity of the assignment of a patent and the act of recording the assignment has no bearing in ownership disputes of patent rights.  

When purchasing patent rights, the buyer is purchasing the right to exclude others from making, using, selling or importing the invention claimed in the patent.  However, purchasing a patent does not necessarily give the new owner the right to make, use, sell, or import the claimed invention as other legal considerations come into play.  A patent that is dominated by a broader patent or a product requiring regulatory approval would be examples of these considerations.

The easiest way to determine who owns a patent is to use the Patent Assignment Database which allows for searches by patent number, assignor name or assignee name. 

Below is a summary of selected patents that have been recently issued in textile related classification codes:

Device for the protection of collars on garments during washing or cleaning:  A device for protecting collars on garments during washing or cleaning comprising two hinged sheets that can open and close over the collar.  Patent #:  8607362.  Inventor:  Zellner.  Assignee:  Zellner.

Ergonomic swaddling garment:  A garment for swaddling an infant with a retractable shell for fit and comfort.  Patent #: 8607364.  Inventor:  Barski.  Assignee:  Barski.

Snake proof protective garment:  A protective article of clothing adapted to protect snake fangs from biting into the leg of a wearer.  Patent #:  8607365.  Inventor:  Watley.  Assignee:  Boyt Harness Company, Llc.

Ecological fabric having ultraviolet radiation protection:  A fabric having ultraviolet radiation protection incorporated by coating with zinc oxide nanoparticles.  Patent #:  8608807.  Inventors:  Kramer,  Assignee:  The Sweet Living Group, LLC.

Shock absorbing footwear construction:  Shock absorbing construction for the sole of a shoe.  US Patent #: 8607475.  Inventor:  Nakano.  Assignee:  Wolverine World Wide, LLC.

Article of footwear with multiple hardnesses and method of manufacture:  Manufacturing method to build a shoe with materials of differeing hardness in various components.  Patent #:  8607474.  Inventor:  Spanks,  Assignee:  Nike, Inc.

Waterproof breathable footwear having hybrid upper construction:  A shoe with enhanced whole boot breathability and reduced wet pickup comprising an upper having an inferior and superior compartment, a mechanism for joining the superior and inferior compartments together, a protective cover; and an outer sole.  Patent #:  8607476.  Inventors:  Jessiman and Weiner.  Assignee:  W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc.

Spike device for an anti-slid shoe:  An anti-slid shoe with retractable spikes and that is less complex and more reliable than previously available.  Patent #:  8607477.  Inventor:   Amark.  Assignee:  Grip Force Technologies Ab.

Dance shoe:  A dance shoe with an offset lacing system and a two piece sole.  Patent #:  8607478.  Inventor:  Sokolowski.  Assignee:  Nike, Inc. 

Pair of golf shoes:  A pair of golf shoes with a rolling surface provided along a shoe outer edge and in the big toe region.  These regions support the swing motion and provide a smoother weight adjustment during a proper golf swing.  Patent #:  8607479.  Inventor:  Schwarz.  Assignee:  Schwarz. 

System, components and method for treating a fabric:  A system for facilitating treatment of a fabric comprising a pad and fabric grips which secure the fabric against the pad. The fabric grips are used to arrange the fabric on the pad and provide tension to the fabric to facilitate fabric treatments such as steaming, heating and/or pressing.  Patent #:  8607484.  Inventor:  Rosenzweig,  Assignee:  Euro-Pro Operating, Llc.

Organopolysiloxane composition and process for producing rope structure with the same:  A synthetic fiber rope using a silicone based chain polymer to coat the synthetic fibers.  This significantly improves fatigue resistance of the rope and may improve abrasion resistance.  The organopolysiloxane composition has an average polymerization degree of 50,000 to 200,000 and represented by the following formula.  The patent may also cover incorporating the silicone polymer chain directly into the yarn or fiber structure in lieu of coating.  Patent #:  US 8607539.  Inventors:  Uehata,  Assignee:  Kuraray Co., Ltd.

Roving machine for producing a roving:  A roving machine for producing a roving from a sliver.  The spinning station has a vortex chamber, an infeed opening for the sliver and a spindle extending into the vortex chamber to form the roving. Patent #:  8607540.  Inventors:  Betz and Küppers.  Assignee:  Maschinenfabrik Rieter Ag.

Seamless knit belt:  A method for making a seamless knit belt by forming two rib sections from a different material than the body of the belt. The rib sections are formed during the tubular knitting process and then the body of the knit composite is run through a polymeric treating system. After the body is treated, the rib sections are trimmed from the edges and the resulting product is a coated seamless knit belt.  Patent #:  8607593.  Inventors:  Lee.  Assignee:  Habasit Ag

Apparatuses and methods for positioning an embroidery pattern on an embroiderable:  A method for positioning an embroidery pattern is provided. Patent #:  8607720 Inventor:  Gardner,  Assignee:  Gardner,

Sewing machine and computer readable medium:  The sewing machine includes an irradiation unit that irradiates a reference mark for locating a workpiece or a sewing pattern in the workpiece placed on a sewing machine bed.  Patent #:  8607721.  Inventors:  Kogyo and Hori.  Assignee:  Brother Kogyo Kabushiki Kaisha.

Jim Carson is a principal of RB Consulting, Inc. and a registered patent agent.  He has over 30 years of experience across multiple industries including the biotechnology, textile, computer, telecommunications, and energy sectors.  RB Consulting, Inc. specializes in providing management, prototyping, and regulatory services to small and start-up businesses.  He can be reached via email at or by phone at (803) 792-2183.

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