Thursday, October 17, 2019

Update on Subject Matter Eligibility

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) today provided notice of an update to the 2019 Revised Patent Subject Matter Eligibility Guidance (2019 PEG).
The October 2019 Update responds to public comments regarding the 2019 PEG. The update does not change the 2019 PEG, but provides further explanation on how the USPTO applies such guidance. For example, the update provides additional information on how the USPTO determines if a claim “recites” an abstract idea and how groupings within the abstract idea exception are determined. It also explains the procedures examiners can use to identify “tentative abstract ideas” and provides more information on how examiners evaluate whether a judicial exception is integrated into a practical application. The update also addresses the examiner’s responsibility to provide adequate notice to applicants in making a subject matter eligibility rejection. In addition to the written explanations described above, the update includes additional helpful examples in the life sciences and data processing areas. It also includes an updated index of examples for use with the 2019 PEG and an updated case law chart that lists selected eligibility cases from the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.
The October 2019 Update materials are available to the public on the Subject Matter Eligibility page of the USPTO website. Feedback on the update or on any patent eligibility issue is welcome on an ongoing basis. Instructions for submitting feedback, and more information on the public comments, are available on our Subject Matter Eligibility page.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Learn how examiners approach unity of invention

Interested in learning more on recent examination practice and procedure guidance related to unity of invention? Attend our Virtual Instructor Led Training (vILT) course “Unity of Invention” on December 10, 11, and 12, 2019. This course is based on recent training delivered to patent examiners.
Due to limited capacity, selection for attendance is based on a first-come, first-served basis. Use our sign-up form to register.
The USPTO is applying for two hours of CLE credit in Virginia for this course.
You can learn more about the program and upcoming sessions on the vILT page of the USPTO website.

Notice of system maintenance

Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS) and Trademark Electronic Application System International (TEASi) will be unavailable due to system maintenance. After this maintenance period, you will need to log in to a USPTO.gov account with two-step authentication to access TEAS and TEASi forms.
Watch the TEAS and TEASi login requirement webinar to prepare for this change.
When:
Saturday, October 26, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. ET
What you should do:
File all saved forms and e-signature forms by midnight ET on Friday, October 25 to make sure your data is not lost. If you don’t file these forms before the maintenance begins, you will have to start the process again with new forms. We apologize for any inconvenience.
More information:
Read the release highlights on our TEAS and TEASi maintenance and enhancement page of the USPTO website to find out more about the changes we are making to TEAS and TEASi.

Agents and attorneys: Learn to think like an examiner

If you are a patent attorney or agent, it helps to think like an examiner. Learn how examiners make decisions in the Stakeholder Training on Examination Practice and Procedure (STEPP) agent and attorney course on January 28-30, 2020 at the Miami Beach Regional Library in Miami, Florida.
We will lead in-person courses based on material developed to train our employees. Training focuses on how our examiners review patent applications according to the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP). Similar to entry-level examiners, each attendee will use a sample application that will be the focus of exercises.
We are applying for CLE credit in Florida for this course.
You can learn more about the program and upcoming sessions on the STEPP page of the USPTO website.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Change in effective date of new rule requiring electronic filing for trademark submissions

USPTO has published a new rule in the Federal Register that changes the effective date of the rule requiring trademark applicants and registrants to:
  • File online using our Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS). 
  • Provide and maintain an accurate email address for receiving correspondence from the USPTO.
The new rule changes the effective date from October 5, 2019 to December 21, 2019.
Read more about how this federal trademark law change affects you.