California Inventors Assistance Program [CIAP]
Under Section 32 of the “America Invents Act,” the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) established a new pro bono program designed to assist financially under-resourced independent inventors and small businesses. CLA was selected as the statewide Administrator of the program throughout California to process pro bono intakes in conjunction with the USPTO. This program is called the CALIFORNIA INVENTORS ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (CIAP). The CIAP also currently provides services to five western U.S. states (Hawaii, Alaska, Oregon, California and Nevada).
To begin a CIAP referral clients should start with the Financial Screening Application below. This application and supporting documentation is required for members of the inventor community seeking pro bono CIAP assistance. Please note this assistance may NOT be free. This financial assistance only means legal fees will be waived by the attorneys working on your matter. There may be other fees and costs associated with your matter that you will be responsible for paying such as filing fees, copying fees, search fees, etc. The attorneys helping you will not be able to pay these fees on your behalf.
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See the article below for more information about how the USPTO's regional pro bono programs are working for independent inventors and small businesses: