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Working As A Patent Agent

  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • Stressful

  • $155,700

    Average Salary

What Does A Patent Agent Do At LSI Solutions

* Prepare and file high-quality non-provisional and provisional utility patent applications with the U
* S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in a timely fashion as assigned.
* Prepare and file high-quality ornamental design patent applications with the USPTO in a timely fashion as assigned.
* Prepare and file high-quality international PCT patent applications with the U
* S. Receiving Office in a timely fashion as assigned.
* Develop and follow appropriate patent claim strategies and be able to communicate such strategies to internal clients/management proactively and as requested.
* Actively research and identify intellectual property potential for new LSI technologies.
* Perform due diligence and patent validity and infringement analyses on existing LSI patents and patents from other companies, as requested.
* Vigorously and efficiently recommend and implement appropriate courses of action and responses to patent offices during patent application prosecution in a timely fashion and in line with LSI’s goals to help develop an intellectual property portfolio.
* Effectively research prior art.
* Advise pertinent staff regarding associated U
* S. and PCT patent rules and regulations to adhere to in filing proceedings.
* Understand appropriate forms needed to accompany U
* S. and PCT patent-related submissions and how to correctly fill out such forms.
* Correctly and efficiently work with the USPTO EFS
* Web system when submitting U
* S. and/or PCT documents.
* Understand and work effectively with the USPTO Private
* Pair System, Maintenance Fee Payment System, and Electronic Patent Assignment System.
* Understand and use paper filing methods for patent-related submissions in the event that electronic methods are not available.
* Follow processes to ensure effective compliance with duty of disclosure for relevant pending U
* S. patent applications.
* Understand all docketing considerations for various stages in U
* S. and PCT prosecution, and be able to apply such knowledge to ensure docket system entries are correctly made by administrative staff, advising appropriate corrections and courses of action as needed to help maintain an effective docketing check-and-balance system for docketing accuracy.
* Correspond with foreign agents for patent matters and assist with foreign filings and prosecution where applicable.
* Communicate effectively with the USPTO and relevant examiners and boards.
* Organize and prioritize numerous tasks and complete them under time constraints and in an efficient and cost effective manner.
* Interact professionally with clients, lawyers, and employees at all levels and provide information with ordinary courtesy and tact while safeguarding confidentiality.
* Follow docketing and filing procedures for patent matters to ensure consistent and accurate tracking of related deadlines and activities.
* Ensure patent maintenance and annuity fees are authorized by company management and paid in a timely fashion.
* Responsibly and effectively utilize the USPTO financial manager for U
* S. and PCT patent transactions.
* Work effectively with an assigned mentor/manager on the above responsibilities, receptively implementing suggestions and constructive feedback provided by the assigned mentor/manager.
* Level of mentoring will vary, depending on demonstrated knowledge and experience.
* Understand and interpret 2D drawings and 3D CAD models, as well as actual prototypes, and ask appropriate questions of inventors, engineers, and/or designers to obtain a thorough understanding of LSI technology.
* Attend labs where technology under development is being tested to gain more understanding of how the technology is used.
* Perform other related duties and projects as business needs require at direction of management

What Does A Patent Agent Do At Ligand Pharmaceuticals

* Interface with outside patent and trademark counsel and oversee and instruct foreign associates handling foreign applications;
* Prepare and file patent and trademark applications and supporting documentation with USPTO;
* Conduct patent searches and literature reviews as appropriate to complete analysis of patent position and prosecution strategies;
* Negotiate and draft MTAs, CDAs, licensing, corporate partnering, patent acquisition and related agreements;
* Docket and track patent and trademark related deadlines;
* Provide legal support and advisory services regarding intellectual property protection;
* Prepare and monitor intellectual property budget; and
* Manage patent information for timely, accurate and consistent reporting between various departments and databases.
* Non-essential Role Responsibilities Include
* Provide support and review on M&A diligence related activities
* Assist and provide legal related information to finance for PIMS application

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How To Become A Patent Agent

All lawyers must have a law degree and must also typically pass a state’s written bar examination.


Becoming a lawyer usually takes 7 years of full-time study after high school—4 years of undergraduate study, followed by 3 years of law school. Most states and jurisdictions require lawyers to complete a juris doctor (J.D.) degree from a law school accredited by the American Bar Association (ABA). ABA accreditation signifies that the law school—particularly its curricula and faculty—meets certain standards.

A bachelor’s degree is required for entry into most law schools, and courses in English, public speaking, government, history, economics, and mathematics are useful.

Almost all law schools, particularly those approved by the ABA, require applicants to take the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). This test measures applicants’ aptitude for the study of law.

A J.D. degree program includes courses such as constitutional law, contracts, property law, civil procedure, and legal writing. Law students may choose specialized courses in areas such as tax, labor, and corporate law.


Prospective lawyers take licensing exams called "bar exams." When a lawyer receives their license to practice law, they are "admitted to the bar."

To practice law in any state, a person must be admitted to the state’s bar under rules established by the jurisdiction’s highest court. The requirements vary by individual states and jurisdictions. For more details on individual state and jurisdiction requirements, visit the National Conference of Bar Examiners.

Most states require that applicants graduate from an ABA-accredited law school, pass one or more written bar exams, and be found by an admitting board to have the character to represent and advise others. Prior felony convictions, academic misconduct, or a history of substance abuse are just some factors that may disqualify an applicant from being admitted to the bar.

Lawyers who want to practice in more than one state often must take the bar exam in each state.

After graduation, lawyers must keep informed about legal developments that affect their practices. Almost all states require lawyers to participate in continuing legal education either every year or every 3 years. 

Many law schools and state and local bar associations provide continuing legal education courses that help lawyers stay current with recent developments. Courses vary by state and generally cover a subject within the practice of law, such as legal ethics, taxes and tax fraud, and healthcare. Some states allow lawyers to take their continuing education credits through online courses. 


Newly hired attorneys usually start as associates and work with more experienced lawyers. After several years, some lawyers may be admitted to partnership of their firm, which means they become partial owners of the firm.

After gaining a few years of work experience, some lawyers go into practice for themselves or move to the legal department of a large corporation. Very few in-house attorneys are hired directly out of law school.

A small number of experienced lawyers are nominated or elected to judgeships. Other lawyers may become full-time law school faculty and administrators. For more information about judges and law school faculty, see the profile on judges and hearing officers and the profile on postsecondary teachers.

Other Experience

Law students often gain practical experience by participating in school-sponsored legal clinics, in a school’s moot court competitions, in practice trials under the supervision of experienced lawyers and judges, and through research and writing on legal issues for a school’s law journals.

Part-time jobs or summer internships in law firms, government agencies, and corporate legal departments also provide valuable experience. Some smaller firms, government agencies, and public interest organizations may hire students as summer associate interns after they have completed their first year at law school. Many larger firms’ summer internship programs are only eligible to law students who have completed their second year. These experiences can help law students decide what kind of legal work they want to focus on in their careers, and these internships may lead directly to a job after graduation.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Lawyers help their clients resolve problems and issues. As a result, they must be able to analyze large amounts of information, determine relevant facts, and propose viable solutions.

Interpersonal skills. Lawyers must win the respect and confidence of their clients by building a trusting relationship, so that clients feel comfortable enough to share personal information related to their case.

Problem-solving skills. Lawyers must separate their emotions and prejudice from their clients’ problems and objectively evaluate the matter. Therefore, good problem-solving skills are important for lawyers, to prepare the best defense and recommendation.

Research skills. Preparing legal advice or representation for a client commonly requires substantial research. All lawyers need to be able to find what applicable laws and regulations apply to a specific matter.

Speaking skills. Clients hire lawyers to speak on their behalf. Lawyers must be able to clearly present and explain their case to arbitrators, mediators, opposing parties, judges, or juries. 

Writing skills. Lawyers need to be precise and specific when preparing documents, such as wills, trusts, and powers of attorney.

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Patent Agent jobs

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Patent Agent Demographics


  • Male

  • Female

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Asian

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • Chinese

  • German

  • Japanese

  • French

  • Dutch

  • Mandarin

  • Filipino

  • Carrier

  • Russian

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Real Patent Agent Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Patent Agent Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP McLean, VA Jan 05, 2016 $168,000
Patent Agent Perkins COIE LLP DC Jun 16, 2016 $165,000 -
Patent Agent Perkins COIE LLP Palo Alto, CA May 10, 2016 $160,000 -
Patent Agent McAndrews, Held & Malloy, Ltd. Chicago, IL Mar 01, 2011 $160,000
Patent Agent Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP McLean, VA Jan 25, 2013 $150,000
Patent Agent Perkins COIE LLP Washington, DC Oct 29, 2016 $145,000 -
Technology Specialist, Patent Agent Fish & Richardson P.C. Boston, MA Sep 29, 2014 $144,500
Patent Agent Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 15, 2012 $140,000 -
Patent Agent Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Sep 16, 2013 $140,000 -
Patent Agent Quine Intellectual Property Law Group, P.C. Alameda, CA Sep 18, 2016 $137,738 -
Patent Agent Patterson & Sheridan, LLP Houston, TX Sep 24, 2016 $135,000
Patent Agent Bayer Healthcare LLC Tarrytown, NY Apr 01, 2011 $135,000
Senior Patent Agent Mintz Levin Cohn Ferris Glovsky and Popeo PC New York, NY Nov 14, 2011 $117,000
Patent Agent Gardere Wynne Sewell LLP Dallas, TX Jul 08, 2015 $116,667
Technical Advisor/Patent Agent White & Case LLP Boston, MA Jan 12, 2016 $115,369
Patent Agent Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett &Amp; Dunner, LLP Palo Alto, CA Jan 08, 2016 $115,000 -
Patent Agent Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett &Amp; Dunner, LLP Palo Alto, CA Aug 01, 2016 $115,000 -
Patent Agent Alston & Bird LLP Charlotte, NC May 08, 2015 $115,000
Patent Agent McDermott Will & Emery LLP Houston, TX Jan 26, 2015 $115,000
Patent Agent 4 Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Sep 16, 2016 $112,100 -
Patent Agent Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati San Diego, CA Oct 06, 2012 $91,874
Patent Agent Hill-Rom Company, Inc. Batesville, IN Nov 27, 2015 $90,880
Patent Agent Straub & Pokotylo Tinton Falls, NJ Feb 01, 2011 $90,000
Patent Agent (Engineer) Red Hat, Inc. Raleigh, NC Oct 26, 2015 $90,000 -
Patent Agent Gardere Wynne Sewell LLP Dallas, TX Jun 19, 2016 $90,000
Limited Patent Agent Renner, Kenner, Greive, Bobak, Taylor & Weber Co., LPA Akron, OH Jun 01, 2015 $90,000
Patent Agent Ladas & Parry LLP Los Angeles, CA Oct 01, 2012 $90,000
Patent Agent Murphy, Bilak & Homiller, PLLC Cary, NC Aug 12, 2013 $90,000

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Top Skills for A Patent Agent


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Top Patent Agent Skills

  1. Intellectual Property Rights
  2. Office Action Responses
  3. Medical Devices
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Prepared trademark applications/renewals and office action responses.
  • Focused on catheters, implantable medical devices and drug delivery systems.
  • Developed and maintained exceptional relationships with clients and US-PTO Examiners.
  • Completed a range of in-house and external training sessions on US patent prosecution and foreign patent prosecution.
  • Worked with engineers and managers to help convert over 15 invention disclosures into patent applications

Top Patent Agent Employers

Patent Agent Videos

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