Patent Clinic

Welcome to the Patent Clinic, a United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Certified Patent Clinic.  The Patent Clinic provides solo inventors, businesses, and non-profits assistance in registering a patent before the United States Patent & Trademark Office.

NCCU School of Law students, under the supervision of licensed patent attorneys, work with individual entrepreneurs, small businesses, and entities with limited funds, who do not have the means to hire private representation. Students who participate in the Patent Clinic will work directly with clients and gain practical experience in problem-solving, client development, drafting and critical thinking skills.

The Patent Clinic provides patent legal assistance in the following areas:

  • Client counseling
  • Invention disclosure interview
  • Patentability search and opinion
  • Patent application preparation
  • Patent application filing (administrative fees paid by client)
  • Patent application prosecution (administrative fees paid by client)
  • Patent licensing

The Patent Clinic does not represent clients in court or before administrative boards, such as the PTAB. Additionally, the Patent Clinic cannot file international applications.

Furthermore, the Patent Clinic cannot manage or administer maintenance fees for issued Patents. Although the patent clinic provides free legal services, clients must pay all associated USPTO fees. We recommend prospective clients to review the associated USPTO fees for patents:

Interested clients can apply for clinic services by completing the Prospective Client Request for Services Form. Walk-in services are not available. For information about client eligibility, please go to the Client Eligibility Criteria webpage.

Students who participate in the Patent Clinic will have the opportunity to directly assist clients desiring to obtain patents from the USPTO. The clinical experience will provide students with practical opportunities to develop skills in problem-solving, client development, drafting and critical thinking. Interested Students can visit Patent Clinic Student Eligibility and Requirements webpage for more information on the student application process.


NCCU School of Law-Patent Clinic

640 Nelson Street, Durham, NC, 27707
Phone: (919)530- 7166
Fax: (919)530-7982