6) Understand the difference between a non-provisional and a provisional patent application. Both of them get you patent-pending status, but a provisional application holds your place in line to give you a filing date and no claims are required. It has a summary of your invention and is not examined by a patent office official. The non-provisional application gives you patent pending status but it will be examined by a patent office official and can actually turn into a patent. A non-provisional patent application is also more expensive than a provisional one. If you donâ€™t have a lot of money, submit a provisional application and convert it later. But you only have one year to convert it to a non-provisional application.