Patent Agent Salary

A big portion of take-home pay for Patent Agents — over a third, in fact — arrives through commissions. This profession's median overall income is approximately $94K. Total cash compensation to Patent Agents bottoms out near $63K and approaches $139K on the high end; the biggest paychecks include approximately $18K from bonuses and almost $25K from profit sharing. Career length is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by geography. Most report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a strong majority collect dental insurance. Men account for the majority of Patent Agents who responded to the questionnaire — 61 percent to be exact. Work is enjoyable for Patent Agents, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. The numbers in this rundown were provided by PayScale's salary survey participants.
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$62,894 - $130,238
(Median)
$63K
$91K
$130K
MEDIAN: $91,316
10%
50%
90%

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$17.52 - $111.50
(Median)
$18
$36
$110
MEDIAN: $36.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$50K$100K$150K
Salary
$62,894 - $130,238  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $18,473  
Profit Sharing
$1,237 - $25,083  
Commission
$33,000  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$62,548 - $139,024  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 405
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$50$100$150
Hourly Rate
$17.52 - $111.50  
   
Overtime
$60.00  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$100K$200K$300K
Bonus
$0.00 - $18,473  
   
Commission
$33,000  
Profit Sharing
$1,237 - $25,083  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$62,548 - $139,024  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 13
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Job Description for Patent Agent

Inventors looking to obtain protection for their innovations employ patent practitioners, otherwise known as patent agents, for assistance with the patent application process. Certified by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), patent agents help prospective inventors navigate the complex requirements of patent application.

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Patent Agent Tasks

  • Gather evidence to formulate defense or to initiate legal actions; evaluate findings and develop strategies and arguments for presentation of cases.
  • Represent clients in court or before government agencies, present and summarize cases to judges and juries.
  • Advise clients in business transactions, claim liablility, advisability of prosecuting or defending lawsuits or legal rights and obligations.
  • Analyze and interpret laws, rulings and regulations with probable case outcomes for individuals and businesses.
  • Select jurors, argue motions, meet with judges and question witnesses during the course of a trial.

Patent Agent (Non-Attorney) Job Listings

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Survey results show that Patent Agents typically report just a few professional skills. Most notably, skills in Intellectual Property, Technical Writing, Biotechnology, and Molecular Biology are correlated to pay that is above average.

Pay by Experience Level for Patent Agent

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


For Patent Agents, more experience in the field does not usually mean bigger paychecks. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $87K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $112K on average — a distinctly larger sum. Patent Agents claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $126K. Respondents who claim more than 20 years of experience may encounter pay that doesn't quite reflect their extensive experience; these veterans report a median income of around $127K.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $93,735

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Palo Alto offers some of the highest pay in the country for Patent Agents, 26 percent above the national average. Patent Agents can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Seattle (+25 percent), San Jose (+25 percent), San Diego (+23 percent), and Austin (+16 percent). Los Angeles ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 13 percent below the national average. Employers in Minneapolis and Boston also lean toward paying below-median salaries (10 percent lower and 6 percent lower, respectively).

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Experience Affects Patent Agent Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 36%

Experienced
up arrow 34%

Mid-Career
up arrow 19%

National Average
$94,000


Skills That Affect Patent Agent Salaries

Intellectual Property (IP)
up arrow 1%

Technical Writing
up arrow 1%

National Average
$94,000

Biotechnology
up arrow 1%

Molecular Biology
up arrow 2%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 41 votes.

Gender

Female
39 %
Male
61 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
15%
1-4 years
42%
5-9 years
23%
10-19 years
17%
20 years or more
3%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 90%
dental benefits
Dental: 73%
medical benefits
Vision: 55%
dental benefits
None: 10%
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