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As completely as you can, document your idea with sketches, illustrations, narratives, explanations, and any analysis that precisely and accurately describes how your idea is structured, how it works and the benefits it would deliver.
Assess the potential interest of Medtronic in your idea by answering the following questions.
Q1: Can my idea become a device?
We receive many ideas that are simply a concept for a new product feature, with no suggestion of how to provide that feature. Patents are only granted for methods, process and/or structure which define the feature, not for the concept of the feature itself.
Bare ideas can be useful, but they usually are simply a starting point for future work to develop commercial products and may not be a basis for Medtronic to pay compensation. One way to test this is to ask yourself whether the idea can be converted into a working prototype. If not, is the idea sufficiently well-defined that a knowledgeable person can understand and describe what would be needed to make a prototype (often the case with software or simple mechanical ideas)? Or would substantial additional development or experimentation be needed?
Q2: Is your idea new?
Make a search of published patents, products, and literature. Then if you don’t see a similar idea, or if a knowledgeable person believes your idea is new, we can consider it.
We prefer that an idea submission is prepared using Medtronic’s Idea Submission Agreement. To ensure that both your rights and Medtronic’s terms and conditions of acceptance of your idea submission are clear, submissions normally will not be accepted unless accompanied by an electronically signed and dated copy of the Medtronic Idea Submission Agreement.
At Medtronic, we will always strive to promptly respond to each idea submission.
You should receive immediate confirmation of receipt of your idea upon submission through the Medtronic Eureka system.
Then, as a guideline, you should receive a notification regarding our decision about your idea within three months. Because the ability to obtain a patent may depend on prompt filing of a patent application, we strongly suggest that you file a patent application prior to submitting your invention disclosure to Medtronic.
Because our assessment and review cycle could take time, Medtronic will not be liable or responsible for any loss of rights you may suffer due to delays in the evaluation process. We highly recommend that you consult a patent attorney before submitting your invention to us.
Medtronic uses several internal procedures to review your invention, sometimes requiring substantial time.
Should Medtronic be interested in your invention, we will contact you.
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