Patent due diligence is an investigation about a patent. Due diligence is often done prior to patent acquisition, so that the potential purchaser knows more about the asset that she is acquiring. Due diligence investigations may reveal patent validity problems, patent enforceability problems, or patent prosecution events that impact patent claim scope, which in turn may impact patent infringement. Generally, in a due diligence investigation, a patent professional will review the patent and patent file wrapper documenting prosecution of the patent application before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Due diligence investigations may include analysis of information concerning the patent owner, named inventors, technical field or market. Because every patent is unique, patent due diligence should be handled with an individualized approach on a patent-by-patent or portfolio-by-portfolio basis. Rather than purchasing a patent and finding out later on that the patent claims are worthless, due diligence is a tool that may be used to learn about a patent upfront.
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