In my opinion,
developing the product/business takes priority. That said, the process of gathering the information required for patent and trademarking can be useful in developing your business model or product specs.
If you have a comprehensive business plan, simply put this step in the risk management section in the "need it" column. For example, I have drawn out complete business plan table of contents... these are sections of the business plan that will be completed. Once the structure is there, now I can make a todo list or what I call a "need it, got it" list. This way I can see what is done and what needs to be done. The fact you are thinking about it means it is a high priority to you so you may want to burn a little midnight oil in study.
I'm not sure about the patent, but my trademarks cost $275 by using the electronic form at www.uspto.gov
. The cost for a copyright is less than $100 and just depends on what you are trying to copyright. Basically, your work, once public, is copyright protected anyway and if private, protected by state trade secret laws. (if I understand correctly)
Maybe someone else will have more useful advice.