that can save your place in line:
By Jim Pickerell, 1936-, Photographer (NARA record: 4588217) – U.S. National Archives and Records Administration, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=16926537
As we discussed in this previous blog, filing a provisional patent application can be a good way for a company or individual inventor to "save a place in line" (so to speak) without spending a lot of money.
(It’s important to note that there’s no such thing as a "provisional patent." There are only provisional patent applications. Provisional applications can’t magically turn into granted patents; only non-provisional applications can result in patents.)