Use caution when considering a “patent broker”!

If you only have a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.

-Abraham Maslow

Standard patent brokers push clients into selling because they only make money through sales and cannot carry out alternative monetization strategies. Ordinary patent brokers are not lawyers and can only provide limited services. Some brokers do not have technical skills or experts available to analyze patent value from either a legal or technology perspective.

On the other hand, we are experienced patent attorneys that can do many things that standard non-attorney “patent brokers” cannot, such as:

  • negotiate a purchase contract;
  • provide legal advice regarding the scope of your claimed invention; and
  • recommend and implement more traditional patent monetization strategies such as licensing or litigation, if your particular needs would be better served by such a course of action.

Non-attorney “patent brokers” are permitted to engage in a number of tactics, from which we, as attorneys, are ethically barred. “Patent brokers” can:

  • Represent both sides of a transactionWe are ethically bound to represent your interest alone, so you can be sure that our advice and recommendations are intended to benefit you and not the buyer.
  • Act as resellers or “finders” for buyersMany “patent brokers” will offer to buy your patent a one price, while they are negotiating a higher price from the actual buyer. In addition, many “patent brokers” receive finder’s fees from buyers; the same is true of patent “auction houses.” Because, in nearly all instances, we represent the seller or the seller’s representative, you can be sure that we are working to maximize the buyer’s bid price.
  • Share confidential information with the buyerWe are bound by attorney-client confidentiality, so we will never share with the buyer any confidential information, such as the lowest price you will accept, without your permission.
  • Require you to agree to sell at a minimum priceWhen you hire our firm, you are always free to reject any offer that is not acceptable to you.
  • Require you to agree to a period of exclusivityAs attorneys, we cannot lock you into a long term contract. If you find that our efforts are not successful, you won’t have to wait out the exclusivity period to hire new representation because you are free to fire us at any time.


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