A patent search is conducted mainly for the following two reasons: At the one hand a patent search is used to discover the “state of the art” which has an influence on patentability. Although “state of the art” is based on any information disclosed anywhere in the world, a patent search is conducted nevertheless because patent databases are simply made for researches. On the other hand patents are searched in order to find out if an intellectual property right exists which is limiting the freedom to operate with respect to a specific apparatus or method. Patent search can be conducted with the help of various patent-databases. A state of the art research can also be sourced out to crowdsourcing projects like “peer to patent” or “bluepatent.com“.

If a patent search shall be conducted prior to filing a patent concerning an inventive apparatus or method, it must be executed non public. The Patent Law Firm Stuetz offers this kind of service.