5 Reasons why you need a Worldwide Patent Search.

October 4th, 2022

5 Reasons why you need a Worldwide Patent Search.


  1. To determine whether your idea is novel. Just because you have never seen the idea before does not mean it has not been patented.


As Baroness Karren Brady puts it:

“To begin with, before you spend any more money, you need to do a patent search – just because you’ve never heard of your idea, doesn’t mean you’re the first person to come up with it.” The sun

  1. File a stronger patent application. The idea may be an improvement on existing prior art and could still be patentable. The search would find similar patents and the patent application could be drafted carefully to avoid infringing existing prior art and focus on originality.
  1. A professional patent search can save you a lot of time and money. if a match is found and a patent is unlikely to be obtained, it  is better to establish this as soon as possible to minimise resources spent on an idea that is not original enough.

Patent searches are universally recommended before you develop or try to patent a product. But effective research in this area is a real skill, as patent news outlet IPWatchdog explains:

The best and most reliable patent search will be done by a professional that is intimately familiar with both advanced searching techniques and classification systems. If you are not familiar with advanced search techniques and classification you are almost certainly going to miss the most relevant prior art in your own search.”


Patent search
  1. To prove the potential of your idea to investors. Potential investors or representatives of industry may well wish to see a professional patent search to establish the potential of an idea. The information contained in a patent search increases the chances of a profitable return.
  1. To obtain commercial information of companies who may wish to license the idea from you. If similar patent documents are found, but your idea is still shown to be novel, then you may be able to find a buyer for your idea among the owners of existing patents for similar products.

It is widely known that the world patent database is the largest collection of technical information available, and the EPO has the numbers to back this up. They estimate that:

“Patents contain detailed technical information which often cannot be found anywhere else: up to 80% of current technical knowledge can only be found in patent documents.”

Patent searching is technical. 


technical patent drawings

In conclusion, the worldwide Patent Search would give you the results to see if it is worse to pursue your idea. The Intellectual Property Office says that The patent search checks if there are any existing documents that indicate your invention is not new and inventive, based on your ‘claims’.

And because the UK operates a ‘first to file’ patenting system,  – regardless of when someone came up with an idea – the applicant with the earliest application date for an invention will be the one entitled to the patent; there no time to waste to get going.

You can learn more about patent searching by looking at our main page on conducting a Worldwide Patent Search

By: Barbara Bouffard – Co – MD

Interested in protecting your idea?

If you want to find out if your idea can be patented, request a confidential idea review with one of our professional advisers.