My method claim is what my invention actually does.

But my device claim is the thing that I actually want to sell.

How do I reference the method claim in my device claim? Something like this?

An embodiment of the method in claim 1 further comprising...

1 Answer 1


Very unlikely unless the steps call out specific structures

There are claims regarding software that are in the form "a machine-readable non-transitory medium containing instructions that would cause a computer, if executed, to perform the method of claim X". This is an example of specifying a thing in terms of defined steps. It works because we know what a generic computer is.

If it said *a robot that when activated caries out the steps of claim X" it would probably be rejected as indefinite because it doesn't pin down the structure of the robot. Of course your method claim would make anyone who used the robot an infringer - and anyone who made a robot for the intended purpose of performing the method a contributory infringer.

With a lot of detail about the device in the claim "a machine driven by a cam that selectively moves rods in a horizontal plane, such that when activated holes are punched in a card following the method of claim X" could work.

Alternatively, have a second independent claim directed to the device you plan to sell that defines the device in terms of its structure.

  • Thanks again George!
    – user875234
    Jun 13, 2020 at 2:34

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