The UVM Patent and Trademark Resource Center
The USPTO in 1996 designated UVM's Howe Library as a Patent and Trademark Resource Center (PTRC). PTRCs support patent and trademark research and technology transfer. The Howe Library is currently Vermont's only PTRC. PTRC services are free and open to the public.
To discuss how the PTRC can support you, or to schedule an appointment for a free patent or trademark information consultation, contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org or (802) 656-2542.
The PTRC is located on the ground floor of the Howe Library in the U.S. Government Information area.
PTRC library representatives can provide patent and trademark information and research assistance and introduce researchers to patent and trademark search processes.
Research assistance for patent and trademark searching can also be found in the Howe Library's Patents and Trademarks research guide.
PTRC services include the following:
- introduction to patent searching and patent classification, including the Cooperative Patent Classification system
- demonstrations of how to use search tools to conduct a patent or trademark search
- access to USPTO research tools, including examiner-based search systems such as PubEAST and PubWEST (specialized tools used by professional searchers, patent attorneys, and patent agents)
- access to literature from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on application procedures and other USPTO business processes
- access to self-help books and other literature on a variety of intellectual property (IP) subjects, including patenting, trademark registration, licensing, and copyright
- orientation to the USPTO website and other IP-related information sources
- referrals to appropriate contacts for IP-related transactions, business planning, and entrepreneurship education
- access to patent search databases
- directions to information explaining the application process and fee schedule
- access to a directory of local patent attorneys who are licensed to practice before the USPTO
- classes, workshops, and presentations on intellectual property topics
- assistance on how to do historical research on patents and trademarks
- assistance on how to track current research by a company or non-profit
- help finding patent assignee information
The UVM PTRC does NOT provide legal advice or assistance that might be considered unauthorized practice of law. This includes the following:
- patent or trademark searches pertaining to a person's inquiry
- evaluations of patent or trademark searches pertaining to a person's inquiry, including the quality or completeness of the search
- opinions on the patentability of an inventor’s work, including novelty, utility, and non-obviousness
- assistance writing any user's patent or trademark application, either in whole or in part
- any other processes related to business or intellectual property (IP) matters that are normally performed by a licensed attorney
- endorsement of any attorney, agent, or other private entity for the purpose of applying for a patent, registering a trademark, manufacturing, market entry, or any related IP and business matters
- payment of application fees or other funding
- copyright searches or assistance
The Plant Patent Collection
Any asexually-reproduced "distinct and new variety of plant, including cultivated sports, mutants, hybrids, and newly found seedlings, other than a tuber propagated plant or a plant found in an uncultivated state," is eligible for a plant patent.
PTRC library representatives can assist you with plant patent research and provide access to plant patent collections.
Also, the UVM PTRC has a collection of full-color print documents of plant patents. This collection is located on the ground floor of the Howe Library, in the U.S. Government Information area.
About the PTRC Program
The Patent and Trademark Resource Centers Program administers a nationwide network of public, state, and academic libraries designated as Patent and Trademark Resource Centers authorized by 35 U.S.C. 12 to:
- disseminate patent and trademark information, and
- support diverse intellectual property needs of the public.