New expedited patent application rules go into effect

The Daily Record Newswire

Starting May 4, patent applicants can pay to have their applications expedited under new rules adopted by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

For a $4,800 fee, applications can be processed for final disposition within 12 months under the rules.

The new patent fast-track is only available to 10,000 applicants this year.

After the year is over, patent officials will examine the process to see if the maximum number of expedited applications should be raised, lowered or eliminated altogether.

The final rule was published in the April 4th issue of the Federal Register.

During the initial comment period for the rule, several commenters suggested that the fast-track application cost was too high, and should be lowered to under $1,000 so as not to disadvantage smaller entities applying for patents.

But according to the agency, the fee was necessary to pay for the costs of hiring and training addition staff to review the applications without pulling resources from conducting the regulator, non-expedited review of other patent applications.

Published: Thu, Apr 21, 2011

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