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Are wallets patent-able? How would I know if a patent is in the public domain?

I am wondering if this design or similar designs have a patent?

http://www.etsy.com/listing/125697284/retromodern-aged-leather-credit-card?

http://www.etsy.com/shop/portel?ref=top_trail

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1 Answer 1

Pretty much "everything under the Sun" is patentable as long as it is not an abstract idea, natural law, or has a human in it. So an innovative functioning wallet could be patented with a utility patent and an innovating looking wallet could be patented as a design patent. A very rough guide would be about 20 years from filing. That is not at all precise so if you find a specific couple of patents please come back and ask about them. Generally copying something out of a really old patent is ok. If you were going to make a business out of it you would want advice specific to you and the exact situation. Here is a patent for a wallet with an anti-pickpocket alarm. And here is a design for a wallet.. It is not likely that someone will do a proper search for a particular design for you unless you contact a professional searcher. To search yourself you can go to google patents and get to the advanced patent search. Set it for design patents and set the date range to start in 2009. Design patents have very few words in them so your search terms can't get too specific. Maybe wallet stitching card. Good luck.

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Thanks George, this helps. Yeah I am creating a leather wallet and want to avoid being sued. It's just a basic wallet with this basic design. This design seems to be copied often. etsy.com/shop/portel?ref=ss_profile –  user3392 Mar 19 '13 at 4:59
    
Good answer. Design patents have a term of 14 years. 35 USC § 173 –  Yorick Mar 19 '13 at 15:02

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