Patent Law Career

Patent Career Center Patent Agent/Attorney Salary Information

Patent Agent/Attorney Salary Details

"Growth in certain practice areas such as intellectual property, healthcare and litigation is generating an increase in the demand for legal services. As a result, average starting salaries nationwide will increase slightly or remain steady for lawyers and other professionals in the legal field." - National Jurist


Businesses in the Science and Technology sectors regard patents as their lifeline. Therefore, gaining status as a registered Patent Practitioner will open many more career doors for you.

The pay scale varies from $45,000 up to $250,000+ for Patent Practitioners and is determined by many factors.

First, if you are a scientist or engineer without a law degree you will be classified as a Patent Agent after you pass the Patent Bar exam. If you have a law degree and are already considered an attorney, you will be classified as a Patent Attorney upon passing the exam. As a Patent Attorney with the same level of experience as a Patent Agent, you will typically earn the higher income because in addition to writing and prosecuting patents, you may also help protect patents in a court of law.

Second, your degree level will help determine your pay. If you have a Bachelor's degree, you will typically make less than someone with a Master's or a PhD.

Third, your experience level will make a difference. Internships and previous positions will count when factoring your salary. The number of years you have worked as an engineer or scientist will also make a difference. The more experience you have, the more valuable you will be perceived by the company.

Lastly, where you seek employment makes a difference in your pay. Law firms typically pay the most, whereas a Technology Transfer department in a University will usually pay less.

Interested in becoming a patent attorney? Then review our patent attorney salary page. Alternately, if you are interested in working as a patent agent first, you may want to review our patent agent salary page.


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