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An invention is novel if it is different from any other previous invention in one or more of its elements. The Patent and Trademark looks at all other prior inventions – termed “prior art” – to determine whether or not your invention is different from them. However, under the “one year rule” an invention will not qualify for a patent if it was described in a published document or put to public use more than one year prior to the date the patent application was filed for.

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