Law - Inventor(s)

Care must be taken in identifying the actual inventor or inventors, as only the inventor or inventors may apply for a U.S. patent. Each person who actually conceived (thought of) claimed subject matter must be listed as one of the inventors. The degree of contribution to claimed subject matter is irrelevant, but the contribution must constitute a real inventive act, not merely "a pair of hands." The inventors need not have physically worked together, nor at the same time, nor made the same type or amount of contribution, nor each contribute to all of the claimed subject matter.

The position of the USPTO on this issue is described in the following section(s) of the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP):

MPEP 605 - Applicant
MPEP 605.07 - Joint Inventors
MPEP 2138.04 - "Conception"

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