Patent Attorneys in Arkansas Find Research is Key

by Robert Bell  on Monday, Nov. 1, 2010 12:00 am  

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Because hunting and fishing are such big draws in the state, a number of the patented products originating from Arkansas have to do with those outdoors activities, said Blake Glasgow, a patent attorney with the Wright firm. Many of these patent holders aren't full-time inventors; they're just people who found a better way to do something.

They "experience some type of frustration with the way something works, and they say, 'It would be a lot easier if ...' and what comes after the 'if' is the invention," Glasgow said.

Of course, not everyone who comes up with a unique process or solution to a problem seeks a patent for it, Pieper said.

"When a farmer does something and figures out how to fix something, he doesn't usually start a business to go and try to profit from it. He usually moves on to the project that he's working on," Pieper said.

But some do, and several have come to Pieper's firm for guidance.

"We've got patents on everything from rock cutters to methods for reworking hay bales from round bales into square bales," he said.

Keisling & Pieper has also secured patents for such dissimilar items as candles, automotive parts, product display methods and stilts. One of the firm's clients is Marshalltown Co., an Iowa construction supply company that also has a facility in Fayetteville, and makes, among other products, drywall stilts, Pieper said.

As for Wright Lindsey & Jennings, "the tinkerer in the garage is a small part of what we do," Dougherty said. "Most of our clients are businesses or universities. But within that realm, though, we represent a pretty diverse group, everything from the startup company that's out there looking for their first hit of angel funding all the way to Fortune 500 companies."

Most of Speed's clients are businesses too.

"As far as the small inventor clients that have the latest and greatest duck call or toilet seat or whatever, those clients generally aren't our long-term clients," Speed said.




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