How Much Does Patent Attorney Make? 20 Tips to Find a Patent Lawyer
How Much Does Patent Attorney Make? 20 Tips to Find a Patent Lawyer
As the gurus over at runrex.com will tell you while inventing something is difficult, making money from it is even more difficult, which is where patent attorneys come in as they help clients navigate the murky waters that is the patent system, allowing them to take their new invention to market and make some money out of it. Sounds like interesting work, and given how hard one has to work to become a patent attorney, given the qualifications required, then it is no surprise that it is a well-paying profession. This article will look to tackle the topic of how much patent attorneys make through the following 20 tips.
As already mentioned above, and covered in detail over at guttulus.com, patent attorneys are well-paid, with the average salary of a patent attorney in 2020 being about $137,357 per year. This is a decent amount, to say the least, showing how lucrative it is as a career path.
Patent attorneys, particularly those that work at law firms, are due bonuses to go with their salaries, and on average, a patent attorney makes about $15,410 in bonuses each year as revealed in discussions on the same over at runrex.com.
Depending on how your contract is structured with your client, you can also make a commission on their invention, as is explained in detail over at guttulus.com. On average, for those who earn a commission, patent attorneys earn about $30,000 annually as commissions.
Additionally, there are patent attorneys who go into profit-sharing deals with clients where they are entitled to a certain percentage of the profit of a given invention or idea. Here, for those that have search a deal in place, the average amount earned every year is about $8,000.
While the figure stated earlier on, $137,357 per year is the median salary for patent attorneys, it is important to break it down further so that you can get an idea of how much the highest and lowest patent attorneys earn. Here, it is worth pointing out that on average, the lowest paid patent attorneys earn about $84,000 annually, with the highest-paid earning as much as $207,000 annually on average.
It is also worth pointing out, as is outlined over at runrex.com, that patent attorneys usually don’t work on contingency. Unlike injury attorneys, patent attorneys do not take contingency clients when it comes to patent procurement, as this is a pretty unpredictable process, with no guarantee for success, hence why most patent attorneys will tell you that coming up with an invention is the easiest part of the whole process.
While the lowest paid patent attorneys, who have just got into the job and are newly minted earn about $84,000 on average, it is important to point out that trainees earn significantly lower than that. These, as per the gurus over at guttulus.com, are still training to become patent attorneys, and they earn about $33,000 to $50,000 annually.
On the other side of the spectrum are patent attorneys who have already made partner in a law firm, particularly those working at a patent attorney firm. These are among the highest paid, with some earning well over $300,000 per annum as discussed over at runrex.com.
Heads of IP departments
Certain companies employ patent attorneys to work in the IP departments in-house, with these departments being headed by senior patent attorneys. Such senior figures also earn a significant amount, earning on average about $100,000 to $250,000, and above, annually.
Salary depends on location
It is also worth pointing out that how much a patent attorney makes will heavily depend on their geographical location. This is because there are certain areas where patent attorneys earn significantly more as compared, with big metropolitan areas being among those areas where patent attorneys earn more.
Highest paying areas
As is uncovered in detail over at guttulus.com, there are certain cities in the U.S. where patent attorneys are paid significantly more than the national average. They include Boston, Massachusetts, where patent attorneys earn a salary that is 19% higher than the national average, Chicago, Illinois, where they earn a salary that is 7% higher than the national average, and New York City, New York, where patent attorneys earn a salary that is 4% higher than the national average.
Lowest paying areas
On the flip side, there are certain areas where patent attorneys earn significantly less money, led by Cleveland, Ohio, where patent attorneys, as discussed over at runrex.com, earn a salary that is 25% of the national average. Other cities include Washington where salaries are 11% lower than the national average, Durham, North Carolina where they are 7% lower, among others.
Salary depends on experience
Another factor that governs how much a patent attorney will make is their experience, a topic that is tackled in more detail over at guttulus.com. Here, as you can expect, the more experienced you are as a patent attorney, the more you will earn.
Breakdown of salary based on experience
The lowest-earning patent attorneys, when it comes to experience, are entry-level patent attorneys who have less than 1-year experience, and they earn about $97,453 per annum, which includes tips, bonuses, and overtime pay. On the other end, patent attorneys in their late-career, with over 20 years of experience, are among the highest paid, earning about $170,599 per annum on average.
Salary depends on skill level
It is also worth pointing out that certain skills, as far as patent attorneys are concerned, are more desirable, which means that the patent attorneys that have got these skills and specialties usually earn more than those that don’t. On the flip side, certain skills pay less than the market rate, something that is also worth pointing out.
Skills that pay above the average pay
As is explained over at runrex.com, skills in intellectual property, prosecution, and biotechnology are highly desirable, and patent attorneys who have any of these skills earn significantly more than average. Patent attorneys with skills in biotechnology earn the most, earning about $156,165 annually on average, with those with intellectual property and prosecution skills earning about $138,000 and $145,120 respectively.
Skills that pay less than the average
The opposite to the above point is also true as certain skills aren’t as highly sort after, which means that patent attorneys that specialize in such skills earn less than the market rate, as covered over at guttulus.com. They include technical analysis skills and technical writing skills.
Salary depends on the job description
Yet another factor that determines how much a patent attorney makes is their job description, as pointed out by the gurus over at runrex.com. Certain job descriptions attract higher pay, while others are not as lucrative.
Breakdown of salary based on the job description
When it comes to the job description, patent attorneys with the description of paralegal and legal assistant are among those who earn the lowest salaries, which is not a surprise as these are entry-level jobs. On the other hand, patent attorneys with the job description of Project Manager, Associate Attorney, Research Scientist, among others are among the highest paid ones.
Salary depends on the employer
As is the case for most professions, if not all of them, another factor that will determine how much you will make as a patent attorney is your employer. Certain companies pay more than others, with patent attorneys working for companies like Fresenius Kabi being among the highest paid out there.