In 2011 my partner and I abandoned a patent application after publishing because of spiraling costs, since then he has made another application with his new business partners in 2015 which is basically the same thing. Would I be correct saying that the first patent application is within the public domain and is free to be used by anybody including me.



2 Answers 2


Since it was published 4 years before the time the new application was filed and then abandoned with no patent related to the application issued or continuation filed, the information in the published application is usable a prior art against the 2015 application. With the same topic and a common inventor the examiner would be very likely to cite it against the new application.

Separately, is it "free to be used by anybody"? Not necessarily. A third party might have a patent on the exact same, or overlapping, material from an application filed before your 2011 application,


If the second patent is claiming priority from your first application, and if the patent gets grant then it would be an issue.

If the second application filed in 2015 doesn't claim priority from 2011 application then the part disclosed would be in public domain.

But before going on with the use consider consulting and attorney to prevent legal issues in future from your old partner.


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