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Hi

I have an invention pending with Davison and have paid them around $9000 dollars. I have had a good service with them until it came to the licencing stage of the process.

Since then it has all gone down hill with lack of communication from Davison and even more lack of communication from the patent office.

I feel I was given wrong information how to fill in the patent application forms and the personal cheque I had to send in to the Patent Office back in August 2012.

To cut a long story short Davison didnt want to know anything about the way the patent application was sent in and the patent office didnt want to know anythin about davison giving me wrong information leaving me in the middle of a mess...by the way Im from the UK not the States.

I have just been informed by the patent office that because of late payments bounced cheques which supposedly were incorrectly filled in by me with advice from Davisons the cost has now risen from $125 US dollars to $425 US dollars.

I believe this whole patent application process is one big rip off but nothing I can do about it.

I have been informed by the patent office to ask Davison if I can start again with a completly new application costing me another $125 US dollars ontop of the $125 US dollars I have already paid which is none refundable.

I sent all the information in on time only to find I was given bad advice from Davisons on how to complete the paperwork and now Im the one to foot the bill.

What Im getting at is do you think Davisons are a good company to deal with or not...Also does any one have the personal email address or phone numbers to contact Barbara Browning at Davisons because I want to discuss this further but all the top management at Davisons seem to be top secret.

Im after George Davisons email address along with Barbra Brownings can any one furnish me with this information.

One other thing is I have a second invension pending where I have paid Davisons another $2000 US dollars but Im unable to progress with this because of unemploymet and the mess the first invension has given me...do you know if I can obtain a refund of my $2000 dollars...if I could get back my $9000 dollars Id do that to Ive just had enough of Davisons and the lack of help from them.

Kind Regards

Answer
Hello there Barry,

My, my, you found a hornet' nest alright. Yikes!

Firstly, Welcome from a fellow Brit now living in the states but still a UK citizen. I see you’re in Northern Ireland. Lucky You! I always wanted to visit it but what with all its past problems have kept away. However, now “events” have improved somewhat, it is definitely on my list of places to visit on my next holiday to London.
Secondly, I’m going to be a hard on you but don’t take it personaly, okay?
Thirdly, have you checked out the The Young Innovators/Inventors Programme in your town yet? Programmes like this generally have consultants able to answer questions when it comes to Licencing or know who to refer one too should you need additional help in the future.  
http://www.dungannon.gov.uk/index.cfm/area/page/pagekey/745
Also, the British Inventors Society (thebis.org) is likely to have many connections to help with licencing outside the UK.

What I'm about to write is my own personal opinion; meaning, you must determine if it's true by using www.google.com  . There's a lot more I'd like to write but you're going to have to contact me off-line at my personal email address which you'll find via Google. Getting sued by invention companies and threatened with lawsuits and being served "Cease and Desist Orders" is, I hope, behind me so I don't want to open myself up to attacks from gi-normous (made up word) entities like invention marketing companies who are, in my personal opinion, bullies - and neither should you so watch what you write online about them. You're in a better position as you're not on their legal (registered corporation) soil but in foreign territory so it would be more costly for them since they are not paying to have a business presense (therefore lawsuit privileges).  
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YOU WROTE: 1-9

1. I have an invention pending with Davison and have paid them around $9000 dollars. I have had a good service with them until it came to the licencing stage of the process. Since then it has all gone down hill with lack of communication from Davison and even more lack of communication from the patent office.

a) Nothing new re lack of communication from invention marketing companies. Did you not fully research their history and have a lawyer review their Contract and online Affirmative Disclosure statement (ordered by the Judge after the last time they lost their second or perhaps third multimillion dollar fraud lawsuit)?

b) Why on earth you paid anyone beats me since there are entities here who do not charge and some do get inventions (products) to market “if” they meet all requirements (as stipulated in a written contract). They pay for everything; not the inventor.

c) If you are still under a Contract? If so, you’ll likely have a tough time getting anyone to take-on let alone look at your invention (re licencing)as you're under Contract with someone else.

d) Is a working prototype available?

e) Did you read or were you informed before applying for a US patent you must inform the UK patent office first? One usually needs to get the okay from any patent office before one files foreign. Likely not a big deal depending on what your invention is and what type of legal document you filed in the US.

2. I feel I was given wrong information how to fill in the patent application forms and the personal cheque I had to send in to the Patent Office back in August 2012.

a) OK. You either were or were not (“feelings” don’t come into this as we are talking “legal” not “psychology”). However, unless you spoke with a US patent attorney or patent agent or read or found answers on-line or in the patent office website, it’s a risk you took. Fortunately it was only a few months back so by paying a penalty fee likely for “missing parts” (less money sent than required or missing documents) it may be fixable; depending again on what type of document you filed. There are three main types of patents here:
--Design Patent
--Utility Patent
--Plant patent

If you filed anything other than the above, you DID NOT file a patent you merely filed an APPLICATION so no biggy and fixable at little expense. I've found that US Patent Office Examiners are required to help inventors for free and they even have two departments set up
to advise inventors for free. These are listed online too. Had you filed for a Utility Patent they are even required to help Pro Se inventors (those who file under their own steam without legal advice) write or rewrite denied Claims (these are found in any of the above three patent types). How technically and commercially viable those Claims are is a different question).
Bottomline: Davison is merely a marketing company (with a horrible track record). One can usually set up an appointment to speak with one Examiner "if" ones filed one of the above three types of formal patent applications. Or, write a letter explaining your situation and asking for help. Your return docs from the patent office will give you a timeline to answer in. Fail to respond within that timeline and likely one is either going to have to pay a penalty fee or their application may be legally Abandoned (that is the last thing one wants)

3. To cut a long story short Davison didnt want to know anything about the way the patent application was sent in and the patent office didnt want to know anythin about davison giving me wrong information leaving me in the middle of a mess...by the way Im from the UK not the States.

a) As it should be. Davison can not give legal advice since they're not registered
attorneys or agents. The patent office cannot give legal (they are not attorneys or agents, per se, but administrator the patent laws of the US). They also can not give marketing or licensing advise other than what they have in writing on their website. All patent offices worldwide generally subscribe to these same policies.

4. I have just been informed by the patent office that because of late payments bounced cheques which supposedly were incorrectly filled in by me with advice from Davisons the cost has now risen from $125 US dollars to $425 US dollars.\

a) Did you file a Provisional or a formal Non Provisional originally? I was just trying to figure out what the $300 difference is for.  Do you know?

The three-part fee to file a formal Non Provisional (Utility)Patent Application is
Part 1. $310.00 for a patent search plus $125.00 for the Exam and finally, were it to issue as a patent (several years later) $885.00 for a small entity inventor. These fees change from year to year usually in October so were to pay all three fees this year, to avoid raised fee next year, sometimes paying them all at once is beneficial but, you pay what you can pay and you'll get billed for the other (patent issuance and publication fees). Now, were you only filing a Design patent, the three-part fee is $60.00 then $80.00 and finally for it to issue $505.00

b). The only thing I can think is that if Davison quoted anything it sounds like the $125 was either to file a Provisional or were it to file a formal Non Provisional (3 fees due) the first fee is $310.00 for a patent search followed by $205.00 for an Examination and finally were it to be approved $885.00 plus there's a $300 for a publication fee. And, don't forget in the case of a Utility patent there are three fees still due to the patent office up to 11.5
years after one's patent issues to keep it alive. So, I'm not sure what this $425 is all about. Your docs should spell it out.

5. I believe this whole patent application process is one big rip off but nothing I can do about it.

a) Don't be silly. There are standards. It appears you choose to apply as a Pro Se inventor
(not represented by a registered patent attorney or patent agent)– hence you took a big risk and this is what you got for it. Nothing new – happens to many Pro Se inventors.

6. I have been informed by the patent office to ask Davison if I can start again with a completly new application costing me another $125 US dollars ontop of the $125 US dollars I have already paid which is none refundable.

a) The issue for me is, what was your original $125 for? Based on what you claim the patent office told you to ask Davison about ($125), it implies to me they had something to do with applying for a patent for you? I'm confused.

b) If all you filed was a Provisional, that's an ez fix and nothing you have to ask Davison about, that is, if I have your facts correct.

7. I sent all the information in on time only to find I was given bad advice from Davisons on how to complete the paperwork and now Im the one to foot the bill.

a) OK.

8. What Im getting at is do you think Davisons are a good company to deal with or not...

a) Let me respond from a purely personal viewpoint, I would never do biz with any invention marketing company who wants fees up-front before they've delivered anything. Afterall, a partnership generally involves the other side putting up or "out" something too. What did they put out? Zip? You've done all the putting out. Like any invention company, they've got their monies .....so now it's NEXT in line as far as I believe. Your invention is turned over to their conveyor belt to pass down the auto line.

8a). Also does any one have the personal email address or phone numbers to contact Barbara Browning at Davisons because I want to discuss this further but all the top management at Davisons seem to be top secret. Im after George Davisons email address along with Barbra Brownings can any one furnish me with this information.

a) Your contract stipulates what they will deliver so anything else is water under the bridge to them. This is a Contract situation not a verbal volley ball scenario.

Looks like Davison is back up on the patent office complaints page: http://www.uspto.gov/inventors/scam_prevention/complaints/

Complaints were once jam-packed on it and www.ripoffreport.com (those are still up on their site) then the lawsuits started and the complaints were dumped off the patent office site and, after the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) got done with them, they were required to put up a mandatory Affirmative Disclosure statement on their website: November 1, 2009, “the executive management staff at Davison created a new position titled Chief Consumer Advocate.” http://www.davison.com/legal/ads1.html

http://www.complaintsboard.com/complaints/davison-design-amp-development-pittsbu

Today, I see complaints are getting back onto the patent office’s Complaint page. If you have a complaint (especially if you were given legal advice), it should get to the patent office. They’ll give Davison 30-days to respond to your complaint. BUT....if you haven't complained to anyone at Davison or if you haven't asked for a refund..........maybe you need to do that with your coordinator for he/she will immediately stop talking and turn it over to their legal department.

You are welcome to contact me off-line at my private email address. I'm extremely limited on what I want to put in print online.

9. One other thing is I have a second invension pending where I have paid Davisons another $2000 US dollars but Im unable to progress with this because of unemploymet and the mess the first invension has given me...do you know if I can obtain a refund of my $2000 dollars...if I could get back my $9000 dollars Id do that to Ive just had enough of Davisons and the lack of help from them.

a) More evidence you are not unhappy with Davison or why would you have paid not once but a second time too!!!!! If you signed a second contract with them............ your goose is cooked, in my personal opinion. As a corporation it is like all corps: takers not givers.

b) As for Davison, enter into www.google.com  the word Davison Design, Pittsburgh, PA and you’ll see tens of thousands of complaints even lawsuits they lost for millions and millions.

http://inventblog.com/patent/2006/03/ftc_vs_davison_

--A UK inventor’s complaint: http://www.yourimagematters.co.uk/davisons

--http://raoulpop.com/2006/04/26/caveat-emptor-davison-inventegration-will-just-ta

-- Davison mentioned here as is another invention marketing company (yikes!):
http://web.archive.org/web/20041119093829/http://www.thepittsburghchannel.com/te


All the best!

Regards,
Penny Ballou  

Inventing New Products/Inventions

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Penny Ballou

Expertise

The Invention Process; Royalties; Licensing Inventions/Products; Pricing; Direct to Market; Marketing/Promotions; Patent Searching; DIY patent writing; Types of patents/costs/how to's; Funding (grants and Angel investors); Prototyping; Off-Shore sourcing.

Experience

I am founder of an inventors group; Advisory Board President of www.inventored.org; former Licensing Executive Society member; researcher for www.piausa.org and a consultant; plus moderate and contribute to several online inventor discussion groups.

Publications
Enter my email address into any search engine to find them.

Education/Credentials
Invention development: well-studied and applied in all aspects of the process and an inventor myself with one invention in patent pending and others ramping up. Lived and attended schools in Mainland China and the UK.

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