Working as a Patent Agent

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a patent agent. For example, did you know that they make an average of $29.94 an hour? That's $62,282 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 6% and produce 50,100 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Patent Agent Do

There are certain skills that many patent agents have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed analytical skills, problem-solving skills and research skills.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a patent agent, we found that a lot of resumes listed 29.9% of patent agents included patent applications, while 14.0% of resumes included intellectual property, and 10.0% of resumes included law firm. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the patent agent job title. But what industry to start with? Most patent agents actually find jobs in the professional and manufacturing industries.

How To Become a Patent Agent

If you're interested in becoming a patent agent, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 17.1% of patent agents have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 23.2% of patent agents have master's degrees. Even though most patent agents have a college degree, it's impossible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a patent agent. When we researched the most common majors for a patent agent, we found that they most commonly earn doctoral degree degrees or master's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on patent agent resumes include bachelor's degree degrees or associate degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a patent agent. In fact, many patent agent jobs require experience in a role such as patent examiner. Meanwhile, many patent agents also have previous career experience in roles such as internship or research assistant.

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Average Salary$62,282
Job Growth Rate6%

Patent Agent Career Paths

Top Careers Before Patent Agent

Top Careers After Patent Agent

Associate
13.8 %

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Average Salary for a Patent Agent

Patent Agents in America make an average salary of $62,282 per year or $30 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $113,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $34,000 per year.
Average Salary
$62,282

Best Paying Cities

City
Average Salary
San Francisco, CA
Salary Range95k - 190k$135k$135,210
New York, NY
Salary Range84k - 178k$123k$123,025
Boston, MA
Salary Range80k - 169k$117k$116,688
Austin, TX
Salary Range77k - 163k$112k$112,274
Washington, DC
Salary Range73k - 153k$106k$106,014
Portland, OR
Salary Range66k - 133k$95k$94,619
$48k
$190k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Patent Agent
Patent Agent
Robert Half
Robert Half
01/14/2020
01/14/2020
$85,00001/14/2020
$85,000
Patent Agent
Patent Agent
Run8 Patent Group
Run8 Patent Group
10/31/2019
10/31/2019
$100,00010/31/2019
$100,000
Patent Agent
Patent Agent
Run8 Patent Group
Run8 Patent Group
09/30/2019
09/30/2019
$100,00009/30/2019
$100,000
Patent Agent
Patent Agent
Choate, Hall & Stewart LLP
Choate, Hall & Stewart LLP
09/19/2019
09/19/2019
$137,50009/19/2019
$137,500
Patent Agent (Electrical Engineer)
Patent Agent (Electrical Engineer)
Arent Fox LLP
Arent Fox LLP
08/01/2019
08/01/2019
$170,00008/01/2019
$170,000
See More Recent Salaries

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Patent Agent Demographics

Gender

male

61.5 %

female

26.6 %

unknown

11.9 %

Ethnicity

White

79.9 %

Hispanic or Latino

7.0 %

Black or African American

5.5 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

19.0 %

German

14.3 %

Japanese

14.3 %
See More Demographics

Patent Agent Education

Degrees

Doctorate

56.5 %

Masters

23.2 %

Bachelors

17.1 %

Top Colleges for Patent Agents

1. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

2. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

3. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,695
Enrollment
6,596

4. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

5. Yale University

New Haven, CT • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,430
Enrollment
5,963

6. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,188
Enrollment
15,105

7. Georgetown University

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,104
Enrollment
7,089

8. University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, MI • Public

In-State Tuition
$15,262
Enrollment
30,079

9. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

10. University of Notre Dame

Notre Dame, IN • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,391
Enrollment
8,568
See More Education Info
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Patent Agent

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 29.9% of patent agents listed patent applications on their resume, but soft skills such as analytical skills and problem-solving skills are important as well.

  • Patent Applications, 29.9%
  • Intellectual Property, 14.0%
  • Law Firm, 10.0%
  • Electrical Engineering, 9.1%
  • Engineering Design, 4.7%
  • Other Skills, 32.3%
  • See All Patent Agent Skills

Best States For a Patent Agent

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a patent agent. The best states for people in this position are California, New York, Massachusetts, and Texas. Patent agents make the most in California with an average salary of $119,470. Whereas in New York and Massachusetts, they would average $116,501 and $112,148, respectively. While patent agents would only make an average of $107,558 in Texas, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. California

Total Patent Agent Jobs:
92
Highest 10% Earn:
$208,000
Location Quotient:
1.93
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. New York

Total Patent Agent Jobs:
36
Highest 10% Earn:
$206,000
Location Quotient:
1.85
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Massachusetts

Total Patent Agent Jobs:
18
Highest 10% Earn:
$201,000
Location Quotient:
1.46
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Top Patent Agent Employers

1. Moore & Van Allen PLLC
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$73,441
Patent Agents Hired: 
8+
2. IBM
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$140,907
Patent Agents Hired: 
7+
3. Merchant & Gould
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$81,958
Patent Agents Hired: 
7+
4. Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati
4.9
Avg. Salary: 
$132,866
Patent Agents Hired: 
7+
5. Apple
4.9
Avg. Salary: 
$124,756
Patent Agents Hired: 
7+
6. McDermott Will & Emery
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$128,429
Patent Agents Hired: 
6+

Patent Agent Videos

Updated October 2, 2020