Sometimes clients want to save on professional fees. The truth is that quality patent attorney work is not cheap. Patent Attorneys only have so many hours a day and set their fees to maximize income.
Filing abroad may seem to be overly expensive. More and more often I am approached directly by overseas inventors wanting to file national phases into Israel of their PCT applications, thereby trying to save on their local attorney fees.
Probably because of this blog, I also seem to receive more than my fair share of requests for help from inventors trying to file directly into Israel using the online interface. I don’t think that DIY filing is a good idea. Like many such things, one learns how not to do it by making mistakes. Most of the time, the inventors give up and pay me to file for them and also give me Power of Attorney.
Recently someone contacted me via the blog and by the time I got back to him, he’d managed by himself. So he has a number and filing date. I wonder if he will receive Office Actions without an address in Israel. From his name, I am fairly sure that he was not Jewish (well he may have been a converso as I believe was his namesake who (re)discovered the New World in 1942), and so suspect that he will have a problem with correspondence in Hebrew even if he does receive it. Each to his own.
Today I was contacted by someone in India who filed directly into Israel and only had trouble paying the official fee, and wanted my to help them, and were sure that I’d do it for $150 dollars since they had another two cases in the pipeline. Well I looked at the Application and noted that although they managed to courier the application with forms to the Patent Office within 30 months of filing, to receive a filing date they needed to pay the fees in 30 months. That deadline passed nearly a month ago. I quoted for preparing affidavits and submitting a request for late filing and my estimated charge is more than I take for filing national phase applications. I also warned them that the standard for late entry into Israel is “Due Care”. Is waiting until the last-minute and then trying to file directly without professional assistance in a foreign country via an interface in a foreign language, Due Care? Well, if they are willing to pay my fees, I will argue that it is to the best of my ability. I did, however, warn them that it may be difficult to convince the Commissioner of Patents that due care was taken.