Software patents are useless. Witness the similarity between almost any software and its competitors, even though all big companies get big patent portfolios.
Instead, focus on getting something working and into potential users' hands as fast as possible. That's where most projects die, therefore that's what you need to tackle hardest.
Of course since you can't built it, getting help is required. Your own network is the best source for talent -- don't be afraid to ask for a friend-of-a-friend, it's still better than nothing.
You have a big problem in that non-technical people are unable to interview technical people, just as you and I are unable to interview doctors or lawyers -- you don't know what you don't know. That's why the recommendations -- no matter how indirect -- are key.
Finally, if you have a technical friend, perhaps they can help interview candidates.