Patents Patent Applications United States Patent and Trademark Office

News & Analysis as of

Final "Ministerial" Rule Amendments for Practice Before the PTAB

On May 19, 2015, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published its first "Final Rules" package of amendments to the Rule of Practice before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board ("PTAB"). Keeping with Director Lee's...more

New Amendments to USPTO Post-Grant Regulations

On May 19, 2015, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued a final rule amending its regulations that apply to post-grant proceedings. These new rules deal with ministerial changes such as increasing page...more

Conventional Use of Computer Not Enough to Overcome Alice - Westlake Services, LLC v. Credit Acceptance Corp.; Regions Financial...

In two separate decisions involving an § 101 analysis of subject-matter eligibility of business methods patents (CBMs), the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board) found that the...more

US Patent and Trademark Office Implements Significant Changes to Design Patent Application Filings

Significant changes in design patent law became effective May 13. The biggest change is that the U.S. and Japan are now members of the Hague Union. The Hague Union is part of an international treaty that establishes a simple...more

Hague to Break It to You: International Design Applications Are Not a Silver Bullet for Multijurisdictional Protection

As of May 13, 2015, the Hague Agreement is fully implemented in the United States. There has been a significant amount of excitement regarding the U.S. accession to the Hague Agreement, which includes an extension of U.S....more

Beware Change to RCE Practice Hidden in USPTO’s Final Rules for Hague Agreement Implementation

Summary: Effective May 13, 2015, a US national stage application for which an inventor’s oath or declaration (or substitute statement, as applicable) has not been filed is not eligible for an RCE filing. On April 2,...more

International Design Patent Filing Option Available May 13, 2015, to U.S. Filers

Beginning May 13, 2015, U.S. applicants will be able to file international design patent applications through the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. In addition, U.S. design patents resulting from applications filed on or...more

U.S. Ascension To The Hague Agreement Concerning The International Registration Of Industrial Designs

Design patents allow patentees to protect the aesthetic appearance of articles, in contrast to utility patents that protect the utility of an inventive concept. While the scope of protection provided by a utility patent is...more

Maximizing Use of the USPTO’s Patent Application Alert Service

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) recently launched the Patent Application Alert Service (PAAS), a free electronic tool aimed to keep the public apprised of the publication of patent applications. Through the tool,...more

PTO Revival Rulings Are Not Subject to Collateral Attacks by Third Parties - Exela Pharma Sciences, LLC v. Lee

Addressing whether third parties have the right to challenge a patent revival ruling by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal...more

Expedited Examination Options for Patent Applications Filed in the United States

In the United States, patents are granted and issued through the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Each patent application received by the USPTO is examined by a United States patent examiner in the order it...more

Considerations and Implications of Expedited Patent Examination Initiatives in the US

The typical pendency of a patent application in the United States can be between two and five years. In certain situations, a patent applicant may require or want a more expeditious disposition by the USPTO....more

Does the AIA Have a Prior Art Exception You Can Use?

U.S. patent applications filed after March 16, 2013, when the “First-Inventor-to-File” portion of the America Invents Act (AIA) took effect, have started to be published. Thus, it is a good time for applicants to consider...more

No Collateral Challenge of Patent Application Revival

In Exela Pharma Sciences, LLC v. Lee, the Federal Circuit held that the USPTO’s decision to revive a patent application “is not subject to third party collateral challenge” under the Administrative Procedures Act (APA). In so...more

The Confused USPTO Policy on Certified Copies of Patent Applications

Obtaining certified copies of patent applications can be essential to perfecting a priority claim. But when a U.S. priority application contains a sequence listing, USPTO practices make it difficult to satisfy this...more

The Art of Prior Art Searching

Prior to filing a patent application at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”), an applicant seeking patent protection for an invention should consider conducting a prior art search. Also known as a...more

Beware of IP Scams-Invention Development

Information about patent and trademark applications, processes and maintenance requirements is much more accessible to the public than it used to be. In particular, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has...more

United States and China Patent Offices Launch Priority Document Exchange

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) and the State Intellectual Property Office of China (SIPO) have launched a new service that will allow the two offices to exchange patent application priority documents -...more

10 Important Points to Note When Filing a Utility Patent Application in the United States

The inventor(s), the applicant (if not an inventor) and his or her attorney and others involved in preparation or prosecution of the application have a duty of candor in dealing with the United States Patent and Trademark...more

Beware of the CIP—Parent Applications Can Be Prior Art

Companies file patent applications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to protect promising innovations. Often, however, improvements, additional uses and refinements surface after filing a patent...more

USPTO Seeks Public Input on Application Pendency

Earlier this month, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office published a notice in the Federal Register (79 Fed. Reg. 38854) requesting comments from the public regarding optimal patent first action and total pendency target...more

Abstract Ideas: The Patent Office’s First Take on Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank International

The United States Patent Office periodically issues guidelines for Examiners, often in response to a recent court decision or new statute. These guidelines do not have the force of law, but nevertheless establish the specific...more

Guest Post: USPTO Public Forum on Patent Guidance: My Thoughts as a Speaker and Attendee

It has now been a week since the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office held its public forum on the March 4th Guidance For Determining Subject Matter Eligibility Of Claims Reciting Or Involving Laws of Nature, Natural Phenomena, &...more

Controlling Patenting Costs

Now more than ever one needs to ensure value for money in creating and maintaining a patent portfolio. Not only are budgets decreasing or stagnant, but the number of countries that need to be considered is increasing. ...more

In re Dinsmore (Fed. Cir. 2014) - Court Upholds PTO Determination That Reissue Cannot Cure Improper Terminal Disclaimer

Despite thirty years of efforts by the Federal Circuit to bring consistency and transparency to patent law (and the last dozen years of the Supreme Court's efforts to the contrary), in many respects patent law remains "full...more

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