If there are co inventors and one inventor files for and then receives a patent, under the new AIA laws can the co inventor invalidate the patent, or get his name on the patent that issued? It seems to me that first to file means nothing if ALL true inventors must still be named.

  • "It seems to me that first to file means nothing if ALL true inventors must still be named." How so?
    – Daniel
    May 13, 2015 at 5:44

1 Answer 1


I do not see how this relates to first-to-file at all.

All inventors need to be named but if they are not named or if the named inventors includes people who should not have been listed, the patent can be fixed later as long as everybody in question signs off on what the correct inventorship should have been. Pre-AIA it was possible to end up with an invalid patent even if all true inventors and incorrectly included non-inventors agreed on the proper inventorship later. Pre-AIA there was a requirement that "no deceptive intent" was involved in the original filing. Now that has been eliminated.

Pre-AIA if X filed as sole inventor (with deceptive intent) and later Y and Z caught up to him and asserted their co-inventorship, even if X was persuaded to fix it, legally, he couldn't (due to his original deceptive intent) and all three were screwed because it was wrong and couldn't be fixed. Now it can be fixed without worrying about orignal deceptiveness.

This is from the USPTO AIA FAQ:

An inventor must state in his/her oath/declaration that (i) he/she is an original inventor of the claimed invention; and (ii) he/she authorized the filing of the patent application for the claimed invention. An inventor is no longer required to (i) state that he/she is the first inventor of the claimed invention; (ii) state that the application filing is made without deceptive intent; or (iii) provide his/her country of citizenship.

  • I guess what I'm wondering about with first to file is ownership of the patent that issues. If I pay for the patent and get it, and then someone else who independently invented comes up and asserts he is an inventor, do I have to put his name on my patent and then deal with co ownership? Or how about a co inventor I worked with? I thought first to file meant that the first one who files gets the ownership of the patent, so long as that person is an original inventor.
    – user7661
    Jan 17, 2014 at 16:27
  • 1
    Multiple people are listed on a patent if they are co-inventors. Someone who independently invented is completely different. If you file first (and didn't get the idea from them) then you would get the patent.
    – George White
    Jan 17, 2014 at 18:01
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    – George White
    Jan 17, 2014 at 18:06

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