In reference to the patent: US5779129

is the patent valid coz its more than 20 years now.Can we use the design for our production


You are correct that for patents filed after 1995 that the expiration date is 20 years after the filing or priority date. In this case the filing date is January 24th, 1997 so this patent should have expired on January 24th, 2017. I looked in the US Public Pair site to see if there were any patent term extensions and didn't find anything. Extensions are sometimes issued when there is an excessive delay in processing a patent application. You should be okay making a product exactly reproducing the invention described by this patent. I would caution that there is always the potential for other patents that might be refinements that are still in force. A good way to start looking for these would be to look at the forward citations for this patent. As DonQuiKong points out in his comments, there is at least a theoretical possibility that an older patent with a patent term extension might be relevant to your freedom to market this invention. I think this is highly unlikely but not impossible.

Please understand that I am not a lawyer and this is not a legal opinion. As always, I suggest consulting with an actual patent attorney.

  • There could be an older patent still in force (term extension or late grant + 17yrs), theoretically.
    – DonQuiKong
    Nov 21 '17 at 0:15
  • @DonQuiKong Really? How? It was filed in 1997 and granted a mere 18 months later. I found no references to an extension in Pair.
    – Eric S
    Nov 21 '17 at 3:32
  • imagine a patent from 1994 granted in 2005 or a patent from 1996 with 3 yrs extension
    – DonQuiKong
    Nov 21 '17 at 8:04
  • @DonQuiKong That I understand. What I don’t understand is how those situations apply to this patent.
    – Eric S
    Nov 21 '17 at 12:56
  • 1
    there could be an older, broader patent forbidding the use of this patents technology. Not very likely, but possible.
    – DonQuiKong
    Nov 21 '17 at 13:15

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.