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I came up with a very good idea for a tackle box 4 years ago, contacted the tackle box company with the information, and contacted a company that could build me a prototype. the company never got back to me and I could not afford a patent or the cost to build the prototype for product. The company I contacted is now advertising the exact product I came up with. I have emails to them as we'll as the manufacturer. I am 99.9 percent sure there is nothing I can do, or is there?? I seriously need to follow through on my next idea, this is the second time I didn't and now the product is available for sale by a major company. Ugh!
 

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I came up with a very good idea for a tackle box 4 years ago, contacted the tackle box company with the information, and contacted a company that could build me a prototype. the company never got back to me and I could not afford a patent or the cost to build the prototype for product. The company I contacted is now advertising the exact product I came up with. I have emails to them as we'll as the manufacturer. I am 99.9 percent sure there is nothing I can do, or is there?? I seriously need to follow through on my next idea, this is the second time I didn't and now the product is available for sale by a major company. Ugh!
if you have the $$$ pay for a lawyer and go for it.
 

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I came up with a very good idea for a tackle box 4 years ago, contacted the tackle box company with the information, and contacted a company that could build me a prototype. the company never got back to me and I could not afford a patent or the cost to build the prototype for product. The company I contacted is now advertising the exact product I came up with. I have emails to them as we'll as the manufacturer. I am 99.9 percent sure there is nothing I can do, or is there?? I seriously need to follow through on my next idea, this is the second time I didn't and now the product is available for sale by a major company. Ugh!
There is a thing called a Provisional Patent which is very inexpensive (like less than $150)and can easily be completed by the average person. It takes but a few hours at the most to file this type of patent. All forms are readily available on the US Patent Website. (uspto.com) and downloadable in PDF format. All of the required information is right at your fingertips. Do a little research.
A Provisional Patent gives you protection of your idea and or product for a period of one year. Before the years end you can convert this patent to a Non-Provisional Patent which is then good for an additional 24 years. The provisional patent gives you time to contact companies to see if there is any interest in your product without spending big bucks. No lawyers or patent companies required. It's a pretty simple process...really. Do the research. :thumbsup:
 

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Have a lawyer send them a letter threating a lawsuit. See what they will offer to settle without going any further. There just may be a new boat in your future..
 

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Get a Non Disclosure Agreement (NDA) prepared before your next idea. That would allow you to talk with outside companies, machine shops, etc. before telling them your idea. Be prepared because big companies may force you to sign their NDA too, so have a lawyer review everything before signing.

The provisional patent may be the way to go for the next idea, but I would suggest understanding the laws and fees involved with all choices before committing. Good luck!
 

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There is a very high probability that there is nothing you can do, first and foremost you would have to prove that the company took your idea and that will be hard to do.

Almost all companies will not even read or acknowledge unsolicited ideas for this very reason, so they cannot be held liable if they put out a product that is similar in claims to an idea that was sent to them.

The moment you sent out that idea you put the idea into public knowledge known as art in the patent world. To be able to patent a product you must prove their is no prior art on the idea, if the idea was put out on a website, in an article or even in a unsolicited email that one provision may have become invalid

secondly, you would have to prove that you are the novel inventor, if the company can prove or show they were working on this long before you sent the email you loose, companies hire teams of patent lawyers to protect their product lines. And you would also have to prove the company did in fact read the email and acknowledge the contents of it, simply sending an unsolicited email with an idea will not be enough to prove in court and I doubt a lawyer will take the case.

A provisional patent is a good start but you only have 1 year from the date issued and then you must file for a permanent patent or refile another provisional patent. One thing to understand on a provisional is all the work that goes into it cannot change, it is the same as filing for a normal patent except you do not have to have your claims declared and the patent office does not review the PP, it goes into file, only when you file for a normal patent will an examiner review it. This is also why a patent search is critical to getting a patent, if any art is out there (even in foreign countries) on your idea you will not get it, if there is a foreign patent you will not get it. You can do the search yourself and it has become easier online but it is still exhausting and intensive, you have to search for anything that may resemble your idea or any of your claims in your idea.

I recommend that the next time you have an idea you log all details about it into a binded notebook, sign and date each page and have a witness sign each page, notarizing is even better. This sets the date for the idea. Also do not talk about or write about the idea in public, once you do that it becomes public knowledge and is no longer patentable. Before you ever send any ideas to any company you must make sure they are willing to accept your idea and review it, this is where you would have a legal binding agreement with the company and the terms of deal clearly defined.

I came up with a very good idea for a tackle box 4 years ago, contacted the tackle box company with the information, and contacted a company that could build me a prototype. the company never got back to me and I could not afford a patent or the cost to build the prototype for product. The company I contacted is now advertising the exact product I came up with. I have emails to them as we'll as the manufacturer. I am 99.9 percent sure there is nothing I can do, or is there?? I seriously need to follow through on my next idea, this is the second time I didn't and now the product is available for sale by a major company. Ugh!
 

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what was the idea? link to product?
 
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