There is a lot at stake when applying for a patent. Depending on how you write the claims and the specification of your patent application, and how you prosecute the patent in front of the Patent Office, you could lose potential patent rights at any point in the examination process. Filing A Patent Application Before you file a patent application, you should determine what types of patent applications apply to your invention, e.g. utility, design, and/or plant. Then you should determine your filing status: ● Large Entity - These entities pay full application fees ● Small Entity - Universities, nonprofits, individuals & small business (generally defined as having fewer than 500 employees) can receive a 50% discount on application fees ● Micro Entity - Individuals with a gross income less than 3 times the U.S. median household income, who qualify as a Small Entity, and who have not previously been named as an inventor on more than four U.S. patent applications can receive a 75% discount on their application fees.