Do you have an invention youíd like to market? Wondering whether to use an invention promotion firm?
We asked the Federal Trade Commission to help us with ways to find a legitimate invention promotion firm and avoid being scammed.
We know: Invention Promotion Services
What are invention promotion firms?
Invention promotion firms usually promise to evaluate, develop, patent and market inventions. They may say they provide some of these services, or all of these services.
Are they a rip off?
Some are, yes. It pays to be a smart consumer before you sign any agreement with an invention promotion firm.
How do I tell the good guys from the bad guys?
Many unscrupulous invention firms provide a toll free number to call where you are asked to send in a sketch or description of your invention for a free preliminary review. This is often the prelude to telling you the product is great and asking you to pay fees to them, often in thousands of dollars, to help you bring the product to market.
Reputable licensing agents are very selective about the products and services they choose to represent---and they DO NOT charge large advance fees to the inventor. They expect to make their money on the legitimate royalty fees after they have found a manufacturer for your product.
What should I ask for before I move ahead with a firm?
Before you sign a contract with an invention promotion firm, the law requires the firm to disclose the following information about its business practices during the past five years: