Patent Agents


Patent Agents


Patent agents help people through the process of patent applications and filings. Inventors apply for patents to protect their rights to their invention; the government issues patents that exclude others from using or selling the invention for a specified time period. The difference between a patent attorney and patent agent is that patent attorneys have a law degree, which enables them to represent patent litigation and patent infringement cases and they can prosecute patent cases before the United States Patent and Trademark Offic...

Quick Facts


Median Salary



Employment Prospects



Minimum Education Level

Bachelor's Degree



Two to three years experience





Personality Traits



The average annual salary for patent agents in February 2020 was $96,264, according to The lowest 10 percent earned $70,818 or less, and the highest 10 percent earned $134,406 or more. Those with more experience in the field who work in major metropolitan areas usually earn higher wages. For instance, reported that patent agents employed in the New York City area in Fe...

Work Environment

Patent agents work indoors in offices, spending much of their time reading documents, researching information online as well as in print, and speaking and e-mailing with inventors, representatives from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and other parties. Patent agents work in law firms that have intellectual property departments, corporations with legal research and development departments,...


Patent agents will continue to be needed to help people with the application process and to prosecute patent cases before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The number of patent applications has grown steadily over the years and is expected to continue growing. For example, in 2005, the USPTO received 207,867 applications for patents from U.S. inventors or companies; in 2018, approximately 2...