Lets say John has an invention and he wants to file patent for it. He wants to write everything in a single patent with the obvious motivation of saving money. However, he could potentially break his inventions into multiple sub-components and file multiple shorter patents, but he is unsure whether there is any advantage of doing this. What are the pros and cons for both options?

Assuming John is in the US.

  • Just a note, but the patent office may require you to split the patent up if it feels there is more than one invention contained in it. This happened to me. This was quite annoying since the most value was contained in the combination of the two ideas that were split. I ended up needing three patents.
    – Eric S
    Sep 18, 2016 at 17:25
  • @EricShain that's interesting, so maybe John should just try to file a single one and let the patent office decide whether to break it up? Sep 19, 2016 at 0:02
  • Better to concentrate on what John exactly wants to claim. If the application claim dissimilar embodiment, the examiner will ask for a split. John can then pay $ and change the claim, or pay $$ and argue with the examiner. In either case, examination get delayed. I can think of other cons but can't think of any pro.
    – daniel
    Sep 19, 2016 at 3:28


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