In a follow up to our alert issued on April 2, 2020, in accordance with The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), on April 28, 2020, United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) Director Andrei Iancu issued public notices regarding the further extension of certain patent and trademark deadlines to June 1, 2020. Click here to view the updated notice for patents. The updated notice for trademarks is available here.
Documents filed in response to communications from the USPTO on trademark or patent matters with due dates falling between March 27, 2020, and May 31, 2020, will be deemed to be “timely” if filed by June 1, 2020. However, the submission must be accompanied by a statement noting that the delay in filing or payment is due to COVID-19. Examples of such delays include "office closures, cash flow interruptions, inaccessibility of files or other materials, travel delays, personal or family illness, or similar circumstances, such that the outbreak materially interfered with such timely filing or payment."
The COVID-19 delays apply to the attorney or the applicant. For instance, if the attorney is operating remotely, but the applicant is affected by COVID-19, then the submission may be filed, with the COVID-19 statement, by June 1, 2020, without being refused as untimely. If COVID-19 affects the attorney such that neither they nor anyone in their office can respond, then the statement may be filed by the attorney.
The U.S. Copyright Office has also extended its filing deadlines through July 10, 2020. The extension is limited: it applies only to those who cannot file the required physical deposits due to COVID-19 or who cannot file electronically since they have no internet connection, for instance.