Friday, December 14, 2012

Europe's Unitary Patent"

On Dec. 10, 2012 the European Parliament approved two draft regulations concerning a unitary patent for its members. Unitary patents will be an additional option to the existing national patents and classical European patents and will offer coverage in the 25 participating European states. Unitary patents may be filed starting either January 1, 2014 or "the date of entry into force of the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court, whichever is the later."

More information is available from the European Patent Office's (EPO) unitary patent page.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Request for Continued Examination (RCE) Feedback

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is working to reduce the backlog of over 90,000 patent applications that have not been examined since the filing of a Request for Continued Examination (RCE). To reduce the need to file a RCE, the USPTO introduced two pilot programs - the Quick Path Information Disclose Statement (QPIDS) and the After Final Consideration Pilot (AFCP). Now the USPTO would like the public's input to understand the factors involved in an inventor's decision to file an RCE. It will use that information to design new programs to reduce both RCE filings and the backlog. Feedback can be provided through: roundtables, IdeaScale, and email. See the RCE Outreach page for more information about each method.

Information is also available through a Dec. 6 , 2012 Federal Register Comment Request.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) External User Day Event

On Friday, Dec. 14, 2012, from 8:30 a.m. to noon (EST) the United States Trademark Office (USPTO) will host the next Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) External User Day event at its campus in Alexandria, Virginia. Information about the event is available from a USPTO press release or on the CPC Web site. The event "is designed to provide external stakeholders with in-depth information about the October 2012 CPC launch package, as well as insight into upcoming CPC training platforms, in advance of the official launch of the CPC system in January 2013."

There is no fee to register for the event. Registration will be on a first-come, first-serve basis. To register, please email your name and phone number to CPC_Users_Day@uspto.gov.

If you are not able to attend in person, check the USPTO website at www.uspto.gov the day before the event for instructions about accessing the webcast.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Law School Pro Bono Patent Applications

From the summary of the Oct. 1, 2012 Federal Register Notice 24113:
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is implementing a pilot program in which a law school clinic participating in the USPTO Law School Clinic Certification Pilot Program may file an application for a pro bono client of the law school clinic and that applicant's application may be advanced out of turn (accorded special status) for examination. Each school participating in the patent pilot program would be allotted up to two applications to be examined out of turn per semester. The total number of applications to be examined out of turn by law school clinics participating in the USPTO Law School Clinic Certification Pilot Program is limited to sixty-four per year.

For more information see the complete notice.

To see what law schools are participating, access the USPTO's Law School Clinic Certification Pilot page. Note that some schools like Houston's South Texas College of Law are specializing in trademarks only and will not be filing patents.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

America Invents Act (AIA) Phone Number

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has added a phone number for America Invents Act (AIA) help. Call 1-800-786-9199 and choose option 4 to get access to AIA experts. The number is staffed Monday through Friday from 8:30 am - 5:00 pm (EST).

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

University Startups Virtual Showcase Nominations

The National Council on Entrepreneurial Tech Transfer (NCET2) seeks nominations from universities to promote their best startups and present them to the nation's premier investors as part of the University Startups Showcase (USS). The deadline for nominations is Friday, September 21, 2012. The USS Nomination Form is available at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/ussnomination.

The USS Virtual Showcase will be held online from October 2012 to February 2013, and the USS In-Person Showcase co-hosted by the National Science Foundation (NSF) will be held on March 22, 2013 at the University Startups Conference in Washington, DC. A preliminary agenda is available now.

NCET2 explains:

Nominated university startups will present to investors in a 2-hour weekly Virtual Showcase with each company provided time to give a 10-minute live, online presentation. Startup companies will be grouped into industry categories and will be assigned a specific date/time to present.

Companies presenting in the Virtual Showcase will be viewed and scored by angel investors, venture capitalists, Global 1000 companies and SBIR program managers.

Participating investors are encouraged to contact companies they are interested in at any time after the online presentations to arrange onsite visits. This will permit the nominating university to highlight other university companies which might interest the visiting investors.

The top 10 scoring companies will be invited to present in an In-Person Showcase on March 22, 2013 at the University Startups Conference in Washington, DC.

More information is available from the University Startups Showcase webpage or by contacting uss@ncet2.org.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Major Changes to Texas Trademark Act

Effective September 1, 2012 there are major changes to the Texas Trademark Act for new and pending applications of registration of a mark. Some of the major changes are:
  • Term of registration reduced from 10 years to 5 years.
  • Change to timeframe for filing renewals.
  • Likelihood of confusion review expanded to include federally registered marks.
  • Multiple class applications permissible, but additional fee for each additional class.
  • Licenses, security interests, & mortgages may be recorded
For more information see the Texas Secretary of State's trademark information page.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Comments Sought for Lowering Trademark Application Fees

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is seeking public comment on the possibility of adjusting trademark application fees for all applicants willing to file and communicate electronically with the USPTO. The efficiencies achieved by trademark electronic filing and communications have put the USPTO in a position to potentially reduce the overall collection of trademark application fees, and the Office wishes to adjust the fees in a way that further promotes efficiency both for users and the USPTO. For more information see: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-08-16/html/2012-20127.htm. The USPTO prefers comments be submitted via electronic mail message to TMFRNotices@uspto.gov. Responses are due by Oct. 15, 2012.

New Inventor's Oath and Declaration Forms

On or after September 16, 2012, patent filers should use the new inventor's oath and declaration forms available on the USPTO website at http://www.uspto.gov/forms/aia_forms_preview.jsp . You can also access the new forms from the Patent Forms page by clicking on the link: Patent Forms for Applications Filed On or After September 16, 2012.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Prior Art/International Search Via Google

Google has introduced a prior art search tool to search journal articles, books, and trade publications in addition to patents. Once you've done a search and opened a result page, look for the blue "Find prior art" box at the top.
Google is also now searching patents from the European Patent Office. For more information about the international patent search and the prior art search tool, see the Google blog entry, Improving Google Patents with European Patent Office patents and the Prior Art Finder.
For a more definitive classification search of international patents, Fondren Library is now offering a one-hour introductory class about how to search for international patents online using the European Patent Office Espacenet interface directly. For class times call 713-348-5483 or access the patent searching class schedule.
A tutorial for using PubWest to search for both U.S. and international patents is also loaded on a library computer used for accessing PubWest.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Intellectual Property Webinar Series

NIST MEP (National Institute of Standards and Technology Manufacturing Extension Partnership) began a patent webinar series on June 13, 2012 that continues every 2nd Wednesday of the month until January 29, 2013 from noon-1:30 pm (1:00-2:30 pm ET). The webinars seek to "bridge the knowledge gap on Intellectual Property Law Issues between the US Government and various stakeholders." One registration provides access to all webinars including archives for those already presented. Archives are also available on the webinar information and sign-up page. Upcoming topics include:
  • September 12 – Researcher’s Life After Invention Disclosure Topics: Working with university TTOs, agreements, within the context of AIA
  • October 10 – Working with a Patent Attorney/Agent and USPTO Topics: Working with the right TT Officer and law firm, addressing the documents needed for a proper application submission, drafting proper specification/drawings/claims, effective use of interview, understanding a final and non-final rejection
  • November 14 - Patent Trial and Appeal Board Topics: Post-final rejection, post-grant review, appeal process, inter partes re-exam
  • December 12 – Protecting IP in Global Markets: Understanding a PCT, international issues on IP procurement, markets and competitors
  • January 9, 2013 - Picking the Right Global Markets Topics: To where and how do I export? What programs are out there to help?
Past topics included:
  • June 13 - Patents 101 Topics: Overview of the patent process with examination of each of the statutory requirements for patentability: useful, novel, non-obvious, enabling, and acceptable patentable subject matter
  • August 8 – Intellectual Property, non-patented Topics: Trade secrets, trademarks, copyrights

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Revision of Patent Term Adjustment Provisions Relating to Appellate Review

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office) is revising the patent term adjustment provisions of the rules of practice in patent cases to better reflect the period of appellate review. The patent term adjustment provisions of the American Inventors Protection Act of 1999 (AIPA) provide for patent term adjustment if, inter alia, the issuance of the patent was delayed due to appellate review by the Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (Board) or by a Federal court, and the patent was issued under a decision in the review reversing an adverse determination of patentability. The Office is specifically revising the rules of practice to indicate that the period of appellate review under the patent term adjustment provisions of the AIPA begins when jurisdiction over the application passes to the Board rather than the date on which a notice of appeal to the Board is filed.

For more information see the August 16, 2012 Federal Register Final Rule.

Amend First Filing Deadline for Trademark Use Affidavits

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (``USPTO'') is seeking public comment on a potential legislative change to amend the first filing deadline for Affidavits or Declarations of Use or Excusable Nonuse under Sections 8 and 71 of the Trademark Act from between the fifth and sixth years after the registration date, or the six-month grace period that follows, to between the third and fourth years after the registration date, or the six-month grace period that follows. The change would require Congress to amend the Trademark Act, and the USPTO is interested in receiving public input on whether and why such an amendment is or is not favored.

For more information see the August 16, 2012 Federal Register Comment Request.

American Invents Act (AIA) Roundtable

As a part of the implementation of the AIA, the USPTO is conducting a roundtable at the USPTO to obtain public input from organizations and  individuals on issues relating to the USPTO's implementation of the first-inventor-to-file provisions of the AIA. The USPTO plans to invite participants from patent user groups, practitioners, industry, independent inventor organizations, academia, and government to provide input. The roundtable likewise is open to any member of the public to provide input. The USPTO will provide an agenda prior to the roundtable in order to focus the discussion and enhance the efficiency of the proceedings. The agenda will be posted on the USPTO's Internet Web site at www.uspto.gov/AmericaInventsAct. The USPTO plans to make the roundtable available via Web cast. Web cast information will be available before the roundtable on the USPTO's Internet Web site at www.uspto.gov/AmericaInventsAct.

For more information, see the August 16 Federal Register notice.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Texas Regional Independent Inventors Conference

The Texas Regional Independent Inventors Conference is coming to Austin on September 14-15, 2012. Sponsored by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), Invent Now®, and the University of Texas (UT) at Austin, the conference will be held in UT's Thompson Conference Center, 2405 Robert Dedman Drive (for directions see http://www.utexas.edu/ce/tcc/attend/maps-directions/). Presentations and workshops will be conducted by senior USPTO officials, Supervisory Patent Examiners, and Trademark staff attorneys. A limited number of one-on-one advisory sessions will also be available, with guaranteed slots for the first 20 registrants. Presenters include:
  • Robert Metcalfe, 2007 National Inventors Hall of Fame Inductee
  • Karen C. Parker, Director and International Trade Specialist, Austin U.S. Export Assistance Center
  • John Calvert, Acting Associate Commissioner for the Office of Innovation Development
  • Elizabeth Dougherty, Director of Inventor Education, Outreach and Recognition, Office of Innovation Development
  • Darnell Jayne, Supervisory Patent Examiner, Technology Center 3600
  • Catherine Cain, Trademark Staff Attorney
Afternoon breakout sessions will focus on the America Invents Act (AIA), patent and trademark basics, searching sessions for patents and trademarks, and advanced patent prosecution. A networking reception will be held on Friday evening, September 14.

To register, access http://www.invent.org/iic/. To view the agenda, speakers, topics, lodging, and directions, access the USPTO's conference page.

AIA Implementation - Additional Final Rules

The Federal Register has published final rules implementing a number of provisions of the America Invents Acts (AIA). Most will go into effect on September 16, 2012. The provisions are:

Thursday, August 9, 2012

International Trademark Classification Changes

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has published a final trademark rule regarding incorporating classification changes adopted by the Nice Agreement Concerning the International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks. These changes became effective January 1, 2012, and are listed in the International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks (10th ed., 2011), which is published by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). In addition, the USPTO is amending some punctuation and grammar to conform to what appears in the Nice Agreement. Read the changes in the August 9, 2012 Federal Register for Trademarks at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-08-09/html/2012-19568.htm .

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Final Rule for Statute of Limitations Provision of the America Invents Act

The final rule that relates to the to the statute of limitations provision of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) for Office disciplinary actions are now available in the Federal Register. Further information about the OED statute of limitations final rule may be found at: http://www.uspto.gov/aia_implementation/OED_SOL_Final_Rules.pdf.

South Texas College of Law Included in Trademark Law School Pilot Program

South Texas College of Law in Houston (1303 San Jacinto Street, Houston, Texas 77002) is one of nine new law schools included in the Trademark Law School Clinic Certification Pilot Program beginning this fall. Under the guidance of a faculty clinic supervisor, students in the trademark program will draft and file trademark applications and respond to Office Actions. For more information, see the July 31, 2012 press release.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Changes To Implement Miscellaneous Post Patent Provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act

The Federal Register has published a final rule regarding changes to implement miscellaneous post patent provisions of the America Invents Act (AIA).

SUMMARY: The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) expands the scope of information that any party may cite in a patent file to include written statements of a patent owner filed in a proceeding before a Federal court or the United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office) regarding the scope of any claim of the patent, and provides for how such information may be considered in ex parte reexamination, inter partes review, and post grant review. The AIA also provides for an estoppel that may attach with respect to the filing of an ex parte reexamination request subsequent to a final written decision in an inter partes review or post grant review proceeding. The Office is revising the rules of practice to implement these post-patent provisions, as well as other miscellaneous provisions, of the AIA.

DATES: Effective date: The changes in this final rule are effective on September 16, 2012.

For more information see the text of the final rule.

Friday, August 3, 2012

America Invents Act (AIA) Proposed Rule and Comment Request

A proposed rule and a request for comments regarding the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) have been published in the Federal Register. According to the summary of the proposed rule, Changes To Implement the First Inventor To File Provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, the act "amends the patent laws pertaining to the conditions of patentability to convert the United States patent system from a 'first to invent' system to a 'first inventor to file' system; treats United States patents and United States patent application publications as prior art as of their earliest effective United States, foreign, or international filing date; eliminates the requirement that a prior public use or sale be ‘‘in this country’’ to be a prior art activity; and treats commonly owned or joint research agreement patents and patent application publications as being by the same inventive entity for purposes of novelty, as well as nonobviousness." See more at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-07-26/pdf/2012-18121.pdf .

The request for comments pertains to examination guidelines to implement the first-to-file provisions of the AIA. See details at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-07-26/pdf/2012-17898.pdf.

Monday, July 30, 2012

USPTO America Invents Act Roadshow coming on September 26

NEWS!

  • What: USPTO AIA Implementation Roadshow  / Agenda
  • Where: Fondren Library, Kyle Morrow Room (3rd floor) / Directions and Parking
  • When: Wednesday, September 26, 10:30 am - 5:00 pm 
  • Who: Open to the public at no charge; no advance registration

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Patent Law School Clinic Certification Pilot Program

The Patent Law School Clinic Certification Pilot Program will allow a limited number of applications to be advanced out of turn each semester beginning with the fall 2012 academic year. This increases the likelihood that applications filed by student lawyers under the guidance of a law school faculty clinic supervisor will receive substantive examination within the school year.

 The law school clinical programs "provide patent legal services to independent inventors and small businesses on a pro bono basis." That includes help with "patentability searches and opinions, advice from clinic law students regarding their IP needs under the supervision of a faculty practitioner, drafting and filing of patent applications, and representation before the USPTO."

 For more information about the advancement of examination option, see the June 20, 2012 press release. For a list of participating law schools and more details about the student lawyer program, access the Patent Law School Clinic Certification Pilot Program webpage.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

America Invents Act Progress in Key Areas

On June 20, 2012 USPTO Director David Kappos testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee about progress on implementing the provisions of the America Invents Act (AIA). The testimony is broken down in sections and includes discussions of fee setting, AIA roadshows, the Track One prioritized examination program, probono and ombudsman programs, satellite offices, patent harmonization, international work sharing, Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) processing, the Patent Law Treaty and the Hague Agreement on Designs, and assistance for small entities. His testimony is available at http://www.uspto.gov/news/speeches/2012/Kappos_SJC_testimony.jsp

Beijing Treat on Audiovisual Performances Signed

According to a June 26, 2012 press release, a delegation from the United States Patent and Trademark Office, the U.S. Department of Commerce, the U.S. State Department, and the U.S. Copyright Office were among approximately 140 signatories to a "landmark multilateral treaty that advances global intellectual property (IP) rights for the creative content of audiovisual performers." The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Beijing Treaty on Audiovisual Performances (Beijing Treaty) "strengthens intellectual property protections for actors, musicians, and dancers globally, by requiring countries to ensure updated and consistent standards of protection for performers in audiovisual works." The treaty is heralded as "the first significant advancement in international norm-setting in the copyright area in more than fifteen years, and a landmark stride for labor and industry representatives working together in the fight against global piracy."

See the press release for more information.

Full First Action Interview Pilot Program Comments


[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 131 (Monday, July 9, 2012)]
[Notices][Pages 40342-40343]
Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-16596]
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Patent and Trademark Office
[Docket No. PTO-P-2012-0025]

Extension of the Full First Action Interview Pilot Program and 
Request for Comments

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice and request for comments. 

To view the complete text of this comment request, access 
http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-07-09/pdf/2012-16596.pdf  
 ----------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office) is 
extending the First Action Interview (FAI) Pilot Program while 
completing a comprehensive review of the program, deciding what, if 
any, adjustments should be made to the program, and whether the program 
should be extended further or made permanent. The program is intended 
to expedite disposition of an application by enhancing communication 
between an applicant and an examiner at the beginning of the 
examination process. Specifically, the program allows an applicant to 
conduct an interview with an examiner prior to the issuance of an 
Office action, but after receiving the examiner's search results and 
initially identified issues. During its review, the Office will 
consider feedback from both internal and external stakeholders. 
Accordingly, in addition to announcing the extension of the program, 
the Office is requesting comments on the program.

DATES: Comment Deadline Date: Written comments must be received on or 
before August 8, 2012. No public hearing will be held.
    Extension Date: The Office has extended the FAI Pilot Program until 
August 16, 2012. Notice of this extension was placed on the USPTO's Web 
site just after expiration of the prior extension.

ADDRESSES: Comments should be sent by electronic mail message over the 
Internet addressed to: first.action.interview@uspto.gov. Comments may 
also be submitted by postal mail addressed to: United States Patent and 
Trademark Office, Mail Stop Comments--Patents, Commissioner for 
Patents, P.O. Box 1450, Alexandria, VA 22313-1450, marked to the 
attention of Joseph F. Weiss, Jr. Although comments may be submitted by 
postal mail, the Office prefers to receive comments by electronic mail 
message over the Internet in order to facilitate posting on the 
Office's Internet Web site.
    The comments will be available for public inspection at the Office 
of the Commissioner for Patents, located at Madison Building East, 
Tenth Floor, 600 Dulany Street, Alexandria, Virginia. Comments also 
will be available for viewing via the Office's Internet Web site 
(http://www.uspto.gov). Because comments will be made available for 
public inspection, information that is not desired to be made public, 
such as an address or phone number should not be included in the 
comments.

Monday, July 2, 2012

New Regional USPTO Office in Dallas Area

Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank and Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) David Kappos announced on July 2, 2012 plans to open regional USPTO offices in or around Dallas, Texas, Denver, Colorado, and Silicon Valley, California. These offices are in addition to the already-announced first USPTO satellite office to open on July 13 in Detroit, Michigan.  Next week, Acting Secretary Blank and Under Secretary Kappos will travel to each of the newly selected cities to meet with local businesses, entrepreneurs and public officials to discuss the new office openings.  For more details, see the USPTO Press Release:  http://www.uspto.gov/news/pr/2012/12-40.jsp .

New Patent Classification System User Information

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 122 (Monday, June 25, 2012)]
[Notices][Page 37879]
Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-15447]
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Patent and Trademark Office
[Docket No. PTO-P-2012-0026]

Cooperative Patent Classification External User Day
AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice.
To read the complete text of the notice, access
 http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-06-25/pdf/2012-15447.pdf  
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is 
hosting a Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) External User Day 
event at its Alexandria Campus. CPC is a partnership between the USPTO 
and the European Patent Office (EPO) in which the Offices have agreed 
to develop a joint patent classification system that will incorporate 
the best classification practices of the two Offices. This CPC event is 
the next step, in a series of steps, to be undertaken by the USPTO in 
educating and informing external stakeholders about the current 
development and future implementation plans of the CPC.

DATES: The event will be held on Tuesday, July 10, 2012, beginning at 
8:30 a.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST), and ending at 12:00 p.m. EST.

ADDRESSES: The event will be held at the USPTO in the Madison 
Auditorium on the concourse level of the Madison Building located at 
600 Dulany Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314.
 
For Event Registration: There is no fee to register for the event 
and registration will be on a first-come, first-serve basis. Early 
registration is recommended because seating is limited. Registration on 
the day of the event (July 10, 2012) will be permitted on a space-
available basis beginning at 8:30 a.m., Eastern Standard Time.
To register, please provide your name and phone number to
 CPC_Users_Day@uspto.gov.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Derris Banks, Supervisory Patent 
Examiner, TC 3700, by telephone at (571) 272-4419, or by electronic 
mail message at derris.banks@uspto.gov, or Linda Dvorak, Supervisory 
Patent Examiner, TC 3700, by telephone at (571) 272-4764, or by 
electronic mail message at linda.dvorak@uspto.gov.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Changes to Implement Micro Entity Status for Paying Patent Fees

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 104
(Wednesday, May 30, 2012)] [Proposed Rules][Pages 31806-31814]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-12971] =========================================================
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
United States Patent and Trademark Office
37 CFR Part 1 [Docket No.: PTO-P-2011-0016] RIN 0651-AC78

Changes to Implement Micro Entity Status for Paying Patent Fees

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

To see the complete text of this proposed rule, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-05-30/html/2012-12971.htm

 ( The June 5, 2012 blog entry for Inventive Step by patent attorney Matt Osenga discusses micro entity status and provides an estimate of median income figures. Check also median income figures from the Census Bureau.)
 -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office) is proposing to amend the rules of practice in patent cases to implement the micro entity provision of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act. Certain patent fees set or adjusted under the fee setting authority in the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act will be reduced by seventy-five percent for micro entities. The Office is proposing changes to the rules of practice to set out the procedures pertaining to claiming micro entity status, paying patent fees as a micro entity, notification of loss of micro entity status, and correction of payments of patent fees paid erroneously in the micro entity amount. In a separate rulemaking, the Office is in the process of proposing to set or adjust patent fees under the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, including setting fees for micro entities with a seventy-five percent reduction.

 DATES: Comment Deadline Date: Written comments must be received on or before July 30, 2012.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Revisions to Trademark Rules of Practice

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 99 (Tuesday, May 22, 2012)]
 [Rules and Regulations][Pages 30197-30208]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
 [FR Doc No: 2012-12178] =======================================================
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Patent and Trademark Office
37 CFR Parts 2 and 7 [Docket No. PTO-T-2010-0073] RIN 0651-AC49

Changes in Requirements for Specimens and for Affidavits or Declarations of Continued Use or Excusable Nonuse in Trademark Cases

 AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
 ACTION: Final rule.

To see the complete text of this final rule, access:http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-05-22/html/2012-12178.htm
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
 SUMMARY: In order to help assess and ensure the accuracy of the trademark register, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (``USPTO'') is revising the Trademark Rules of Practice and the Rules of Practice for Filings Pursuant to the Madrid Protocol to allow the USPTO to: Upon request, require any additional specimens, information, exhibits, and affidavits or declarations deemed reasonably necessary to examine a post registration affidavit or declaration of continued use or excusable nonuse in trademark cases, and for a two-year period, conduct a pilot program for the USPTO to assess the accuracy and integrity of the register; and upon request, require more than one specimen in connection with a use-based trademark application, an allegation of use, or an amendment to a registered mark. These revisions aim to ensure the ability to rely on the trademark register as an accurate reflection of marks that are actually in use in the United States for the goods/services identified in the registration, and thereby reduce costs and burdens on the public.

 DATES: This rule is effective on June 21, 2012.

 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Contact Cynthia C. Lynch, Office of the Deputy Commissioner for Trademark Examination Policy, by telephone at (571) 272-8742.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

CPI Adjustment of Patent Fees for Fiscal Year 2013

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 93 (Monday, May 14, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules][Pages 28331-28336]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office[www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-11649] ========================================================== ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
United States Patent and Trademark Office
37 CFR Parts 1 and 41 [PTO-C-2011-0007] RIN 0651-AC55

CPI Adjustment of Patent Fees for Fiscal Year 2013
AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

To see the complete text of this proposed rule including the proposed fees, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-05-14/html/2012-11649.htm
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office) is proposing to adjust certain patent fee amounts for fiscal year 2013 to reflect fluctuations in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). The patent statute provides for the annual CPI adjustment of patent fees set by statute to recover the higher costs associated with doing business as reflected by the CPI.

DATES: Written comments must be received on or before June 13, 2012. No public hearing will be held.
ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by RIN number RIN 0651-AC55, by any of the following methods:
Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
Email: Gilda.Lee@uspto.gov. Include RIN number RIN 0651-AC55 in the subject line of the message.
Fax: (571) 273-8698, marked to the attention of Gilda Lee.
Mail: Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, P.O. Box 1450, Alexandria, VA 22313-1450, marked to the attention of Gilda Lee.

Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name and Regulatory Information Number (RIN) for this proposed rulemaking.
The comments will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Chief Financial Officer, currently located in Madison West, Tenth Floor, 600 Dulany Street, Alexandria, Virginia. Comments also will be available for viewing via the Office's Internet Web site (http://www.uspto.gov). Because comments will be made available for public inspection, information that the submitter does not desire to make public, such as an address or phone number, should not be included in the comments.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gilda Lee by email at Gilda.Lee@uspto.gov, by telephone at (571) 272-8698, or by fax at (571) 273-8698.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Patent Examiner Recruitment

For fiscal year 2012 the USPTO is planning to hire 1500 new examiners preferably with a bachelor's or advanced degree in electrical engineering, computer engineering, computer science, or mechanical engineering. Applicants should also have effective oral and written communication skills and be able to succeed in a production-oriented environment.

Interviews will be conducted during the Patent Examiner Recruitment Open House held on Friday, May 18 and Saturday, May 19 at USPTO Headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia. To schedule an interview register at http://www.usptocareers.gov/jobfair/ by Tuesday, May 15, 2012.

For those unable to attend the open house, an online application is available through the USPTO's Careers website: www.USPTOcareers.gov.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Patent and Trademark Public Advisory Committee Nominations

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 87 (Friday, May 4, 2012)]
[Notices] [Pages 26518-26519]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
 [FR Doc No: 2012-10737]
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 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
United States Patent and Trademark Office [Docket No. PTO-C-2012-0023]
 Public Advisory Committees
 AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
 ACTION: Notice and request for nominations. -----------------------------------------------------------------------
 SUMMARY: On November 29, 1999, the President signed into law the Patent and Trademark Office Efficiency Act (the ``Act''), Public Law 106-113, which, among other things, established two Public Advisory Committees to review the policies, goals, performance, budget and user fees of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) with respect to patents, in the case of the Patent Public Advisory Committee, and with respect to trademarks, in the case of the Trademark Public Advisory Committee, and to advise the Director on these matters (now codified at 35 U.S.C. 5). The USPTO is requesting nominations for three (3) members to the Patent Public Advisory Committee, and two (2) members to the Trademark Public Advisory Committee, for terms of three years that begin on expiration of the predecessors' terms. DATES: Nominations must be postmarked or electronically transmitted on or before June 11, 2012. ADDRESSES: Persons wishing to submit nominations should send the nominee's resum[eacute] to John W. Cabeca, Senior Advisor, Office of the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO, Post Office Box 1450, Alexandria, Virginia, 22313-1450; by electronic mail to: PPACnominations@uspto.gov for the Patent Public Advisory Committee or TPACnominations@uspto.gov for the Trademark Patent Public Advisory Committee; by facsimile transmission marked to the Senior Advisor's attention at (571) 273-0464; or by mail marked to the Senior Advisor's attention and addressed to the Office of the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO, Post Office Box 1450, Alexandria, Virginia, 22313-1450.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John W. Cabeca, Senior Advisor, Office of the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO, by facsimile transmission marked to his attention at (571) 273-0464, or by mail marked to his attention and addressed to the Office of the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO, Post Office Box 1450, Alexandria, Virginia, 22313-1450.

To see details contained in the supplementary section of the complete text of this notice, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-05-04/html/2012-10737.htm

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Launch of Manufacturing.Data.Gov

According to an April 30, 2012 news release, Manufacturing.Data.Gov is now available as a "one-stop Web portal" for anyone interested in sharing ideas and "transforming emerging technologies into commercial success stories." The site will serve "as a public resource of high-value datasets, tools, and applications that can help entrepreneurs steer the entire product development chain for a project, from invention, engineering design and prototyping, to validation and testing, manufacturing, and sales."

Friday, April 27, 2012

Intellectual Property (IP) and the U.S. Economy

The Commerce Department released a comprehensive report revealing that in 2010 IP-intensive industries had a five trillion dollar impact on the American economy and created 40 million jobs. Entitled "Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy: Industries in Focus," the report also found that between 2010 and 2011, IP-intensive industries showed a 1.6 percent increase in direct employment versus a 1.0 percent increase in non-IP-intensive industries. The full report is available online at http://www.uspto.gov/news/publications/IP_Report_March_2012.pdf.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Firefox Users Need New Version of Java for EFS-Web and Private PAIR

On April 2, 2012 the Mozilla Foundation announced that the Firefox browser would start blocking older versions of the Java plug-in from running. Both USPTO’s EFS-Web for Registered filers and Private PAIR use Java.

USPTO recommends that all users of Firefox upgrade to the latest version of Java - which is Version 6 Update 31. Please visit Java.com using your Firefox browser, click on “Free Java Download”, and follow the installation steps provided.

If you do not update Java, it is very likely that when accessing EFS-Web for Registered filers or Private PAIR with Firefox, an error message may appear on the Authentication Page stating: Java Not Enabled.

If you require further assistance, please call the Patent EBC at (866) 217-9197 (toll free) or send an email to EBC@uspto.gov

(Message from the Patent and Trademark Resource Center Program [PTRCP])

Patents External Quality Survey

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 68 (Monday, April 9, 2012)]
[Notices][Pages 21086-21087]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-8485]
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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
United States Patent and Trademark Office

Patents External Quality Survey (formerly Customer Panel Quality Survey)
ACTION: Proposed collection; comment request.

To read the full text of this comment request, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-04-09/html/2012-8485.htm

Additional information about this collection is also available at http://www.reginfo.gov under ``Information Collection Review.''

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Abstract

For over the past 10 years, the USPTO has used surveys to obtain customer feedback regarding the products, services, and related service standards of the USPTO. The USPTO used the data to measure how well the agency is meeting established customer service standards, to identify any disjoints between customer expectations and USPTO performance, and to develop improvement strategies. Typically, these surveys ask customers to express their satisfaction with the USPTO's products and services based upon their interactions with the agency as a whole over a 12-month period.

In order to obtain further data concerning customer ratings of the USPTO's services, service standards, and performance, the USPTO developed the Patents External Quality Survey. This survey narrows the focus of customer satisfaction to examination quality and uses a longitudinal, rotating panel design to assess changes in customer perceptions and to identify key areas for examiner training and opportunities for improvement. The USPTO plans to survey patent agents, attorneys, and other individuals from large domestic corporations (including those with 500+ employees), small and medium-size businesses, and universities and other non-profit research organizations. In addition, the USPTO also plans to survey independent inventors. The USPTO does not plan to survey foreign entities.

The USPTO will draw a random sample of these customers from their database. Due to the rotating panel design, some sample members will be surveyed twice in order to measure change over a period of time. Each year of the survey will include two waves of data collection.

The Patents External Quality Survey is a mail survey, although respondents can also complete the survey electronically on the Web. The content of both versions will be identical. A survey packet containing the questionnaire, a separate cover letter prepared by the Commissioner of Patents, a postage-paid, pre-addressed return envelope, and instructions for completing the survey electronically will be mailed to all sample members. A pre-notification letter, reminder/thank you postcards, and telephone calls will be used to encourage response from sample members.

This is a voluntary survey and all responses will remain confidential. The [[Page 21087]]
collected data will not be linked to the respondent and contact information that is used for sampling purposes will be maintained in a separate file from the quantitative data. Respondents are not required to provide any identifying information such as their name, address, or Social Security Number. In order to access and complete the online survey, respondents will need to use the username, password, and survey ID number provided by the USPTO.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Patent Processing

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 56 (Thursday, March 22, 2012)]
[Notices][Pages 16813-16817]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov] [FR Doc No: 2012-6888]
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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
United States Patent and Trademark Office
Patent Processing (Updating)
ACTION: Proposed collection; comment request.

The following is part of an abstract. To see the full text of this comment request, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-03-22/html/2012-6888.htm

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Abstract

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is required by 35 U.S.C. 131to examine an application for patent and, when appropriate, issue a patent. Also, the USPTO is required to publish patent applications, with certain exceptions, promptly after the expiration of a period of eighteen months from the earliest filing date for which a benefit is sought under Title 35, United States Code (``eighteen-month publication''). Certain situations may arise which require that additional information be supplied in order for the USPTO to further process the patent or application. The USPTO administers the statutes through various sections of the rules of practice in 37 CFR Part 1.

The information in this collection can be used by the USPTO to continue the processing of the patent or application to ensure that applicants are complying with the patent regulations and to aid in the prosecution of the application.

Modifications to this collection since the previous renewal include: three requests for non-substantive change; separately accounting for two requirements; the deletion of an item from the collection, and adding electronic equivalents for the majority of the paper forms. The USPTO is also planning to move items out of 0651-0031 into two new collections...

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Thomas Alva Edison Visiting Professionals Program

The USPTO has established the Thomas Alva Edison Visiting Professionals Program for academic and intellectual property professionals willing to serve full time up to six months. Jay Thomas, the first Edison Professional, previously served as an instructor at the USPTO's Patent Academy. A tenured member of the Georgetown University Law School, he has also been of faculty member of Cornell, George Washington University, and the University of Tokyo.

Patents for Humanity Program (Formerly Humanitarian Program)

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 49 (Tuesday, March 13, 2012)]
[Notices][Pages 14766-14767]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-5988]
------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
United States Patent and Trademark Office

Patents for Humanity Program (Formerly Humanitarian Program)

ACTION: Proposed collection; comment request.

---------------------------------------------------------------------
To see the full text of this comment request, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-03-13/html/2012-5988.htm

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION

I. Abstract

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is conducting a voluntary pilot program to incentivize the distribution of patented technologies or products to address humanitarian needs. This pilot program is open to any patent owners or patent licensees, including inventors who have not assigned their ownership rights to others, assignees, and exclusive or non-exclusive licensees. The USPTO plans to collect information from applicants that describe what actions they have taken with their patented technology to address humanitarian needs among an impoverished population, or how they have furthered research by others on technologies for humanitarian purposes. Applications will be considered in four categories: Medical Technology, Food and Nutrition, Clean Technology, and Information Technology. It is expected that inventions from any field of technology will be eligible for the program, as long as they are applied to one of the four categories.

This pilot program is a follow-up to the responses received from the agency's ``Request for Comments on Incentivizing Humanitarian Technologies and Licensing Through the Intellectual Property System'' published September 20, 2010. On February 8, 2012, the USPTO published a notice in the Federal Register announcing the pilot program and outlining the procedures for participation in it. The USPTO plans to review the results from this pilot program to determine whether it should be extended.

In order to participate in this program, applicants must submit an application describing how their actions satisfy the competition criteria to address humanitarian issues. These applications may be up to five pages long and can be supplemented with additional supporting materials. The USPTO has developed two application forms that applicants can use to apply for participation in the Patents for Humanity Pilot Program--one application covers the humanitarian uses of technologies or products and the other application covers humanitarian research. There is also a form where applicants provide their contact information which the USPTO uses to notify applicants that they have been selected for an award. The applications must be submitted electronically through the http://patentsforhumanity.challenge.gov Web site. Submitted applications will be available on the public Web site after being screened for inappropriate material.

The applications will be reviewed by independent judges. A selection committee composed of representatives from other federal agencies and laboratories will make recommendations for the awards based on the judges'reviews. Those applicants who are selected for an award will receive a certificate redeemable to accelerate select matters before the USPTO and public recognition for their efforts, including an awards ceremony at the USPTO. The certificates can be redeemed to accelerate one of the following matters: An ex parte reexamination proceeding, including one appeal to the Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences (BPAI) from that proceeding; a patent application, including one appeal to the BPAI from that application; or an appeal to the BPAI of a claim twice rejected in a patent application or reissue application or finally rejected in an ex parte reexamination, without accelerating the underlying matter which generated the appeal. The certificates cannot be transferred to other parties.

The USPTO obtained an emergency clearance from OMB for this collection, which was approved on January 25, 2012. This approval expires on July 31, 2012.

Recording Patent and Trademark Assignment Documents

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 49 (Tuesday, March 13, 2012)]
[Notices][Pages 14765-14766]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-5989]

To see the full text of this comment request, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-03-13/html/2012-5989.htm

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
United States Patent and Trademark Office
Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request
Agency: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
Title: Recording Assignments.
Form Number(s): PTO-1594 and PTO-1595.

Needs and Uses: Under 35 U.S.C. 261 and 262 and 15 U.S.C. 1057 and 1060, the USPTO records patent and trademark assignment documents that show the transfer of ownership of applications, patents, and trademark registrations from one entity to another. The USPTO provides cover sheets to ensure all the necessary assignment data is submitted for accurate recording. In order to file a request to record an assignment, the respondent must submit an appropriate cover sheet along with copies of the assignment documents to be recorded and payment of the appropriate fee. The recorded documents are available for public inspection, except for those documents that are sealed under secrecy orders or related to unpublished patent applications.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Changes to Implement Inter Partes Review Proceedings

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 28 (Friday, February 10, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules][Pages 7041-7060]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov] [FR Doc No: 2012-2534]
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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Patent and Trademark Office
37 CFR Part 42 [Docket No. PTO-P-2011-0083] RIN 0651-AC71

Changes to Implement Inter Partes Review Proceedings

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On September 16, 2011, the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act was enacted into law (Pub. L. 112-29, 125 Stat. 284 (2011)). The purpose of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act and these proposed regulations is to establish a = more efficient and streamlined patent system that will improve patent quality and limit unnecessary and counterproductive litigation costs. The preamble of this notice sets forth in detail the procedures by which the Board will conduct inter partes review proceedings. The USPTO is engaged in a transparent process to create a timely, cost-effective alternative to litigation. Moreover, the rulemaking process is designed to ensure the integrity of the trial procedures. See 35 U.S.C. 316(b), as amended. The proposed rules would provide a set of rules relating to Board trial practice for inter partes review...

Section 6(a) of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act amends 35 U.S.C. 311, entitled ``Inter partes review.'' 35 U.S.C. 311(a), as amended, will provide that, subject to the provisions of chapter 31 of title 35, United States Code, a person who is not the owner of a patent may file a petition with the Office to institute an inter partes review of the patent. 35 U.S.C. 311(a), as amended, will also provide that the Director will establish, by regulation, fees to be paid by the person requesting the review, in such amounts as the Director determines to be reasonable, considering the aggregate costs of the review. 35 U.S.C. 311(b), as amended, will provide that a petitioner in an inter partes review may request to cancel as unpatentable one or more claims of a patent only on a ground that could be raised under 35 U.S.C. 102 or 103 and only on the basis of prior art consisting of patents or printed publications. 35 U.S.C. 311(c), as amended, will provide that a petition for inter partes review may be filed after the later of either: (1) the date that is nine months after the grant of a patent or issuance of a reissue of a patent; or (2) if a post-grant review is instituted under chapter 32 of title 35, United States Code, the dateof the termination of that post-grant review.

The grounds for seeking an inter partes review will be limited compared with post-grant review. The grounds for seeking inter partes review are limited to issues raised under 35 U.S.C. 102 or 103 and only on the basis of prior art consisting of patents or printed publications...

For the full text of this proposed rule, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-02-10/html/2012-2534.htm

New Rules for Business Method Patents

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 28 (Friday, February 10, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules] [Pages 7080-7095]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov] [FR Doc No: 2012-2532]
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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Patent and Trademark Office
37 CFR Part 42 [Docket No. PTO-P-2011-0085] RIN 0651-AC73

Changes To Implement Transitional Program for Covered Business Method Patents

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office or USPTO) proposes new rules to implement the provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act that create a new transitional post-grant review proceeding for covered business method patents to be conducted before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Board). These provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act will take effect on September 16, 2012, one year after the date of enactment. These provisions and any regulations issued under these provisions will be repealed on September 16, 2020, with respect to any new petitions under the transitional program.

For the complete text of this proposed rule, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-02-10/html/2012-2532.htm

New Rules for Post-Grant Review

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 28 (Friday, February 10, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules][Pages 7060-7080]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov] [FR Doc No: 2012-2529]
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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Patent and Trademark Office
37 CFR Part 42 [Docket No. PTO-P-2011-0084] RIN 0651-AC72

Changes To Implement Post-Grant Review Proceedings

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office or USPTO) proposes new rules to implement the provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act that create a new post-grant review proceeding to be conducted before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Board). These provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act will take effect on September 16, 2012, one year after the date of enactment, and generally apply to patents issuing from applications subject to first-inventor to-file provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act.

For the full text of this proposed rule, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-02-10/html/2012-2529.htm

Changes To Implement Derivation Proceedings (True Inventor)

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 28 (Friday, February 10, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules][Pages 7028-7041]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov] [FR Doc No: 2012-2535]
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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Patent and Trademark Office
37 CFR Part 42 [Docket No. PTO-P-2011-0086] RIN 0651-AC74

Changes To Implement Derivation Proceedings

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On September 16, 2011, the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act was enacted into law (Pub. L. 112-29, 125 Stat. 284 (2011)). The purpose of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act and these proposed regulations is to establish a more efficient and streamlined patent system. The preamble of this notice sets forth in detail the procedures by which the Board will conduct a new administrative proceeding called a derivation proceeding. Derivation proceedings were created to ensure that the first person to file the application is actually a true inventor. This new proceeding will ensure that a person will not be able to obtain a patent for the invention that he did not actually invent. If a dispute arises as to which of two applicants is a true inventor (as opposed to who invented it first), it will be resolved through derivation proceeding by the Board. The USPTO is engaged in a transparent process to create the procedures for derivation proceedings. The proposed rules would provide a set of rules relating to Board trial practice for derivation proceedings...

For the full text of this proposed rule, access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-02-10/html/2012-2535.htm

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Proposed Rules of Practice for Patent Trials

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 27 (Thursday, February 9, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules][Pages 6879-6914]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-2525]
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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Patent and Trademark Office
37 CFR Parts 42 and 90
[Docket No. PTO-P-2011-0082]
RIN 0651-AC70

Rules of Practice for Trials Before the Patent Trial and Appeal
Board and Judicial Review of Patent Trial and Appeal Board Decisions

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
For the full text of this notice access http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-02-09/html/2012-2525.htm

SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office or USPTO) proposes new rules of practice to implement the provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act that provide for trials before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Board). The proposed rules would provide a consolidated set of rules relating to Board trial practice for inter partes review, post-grant review, the transitional program for covered business method patents, and derivation proceedings. The proposed rules would also provide a consolidated set of rules to implement the provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act related to seeking judicial review of Board decisions.

Practice Guide: Proposed Rules for Trials Before the Appeals Boards

[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 27
(Thursday, February 9, 2012)][Proposed Rules][Pages 6868-6879]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov] [FR Doc No: 2012-2523][[Page 6867]] Vol. 77 Thursday, No. 27 February 9, 2012 Part II
Department of Commerce Patent and Trademark Office
-------------------------------------------------------------------
37 CFR Parts 42 and 90

Practice Guide for Proposed Trial Rules and Rules of Practice for Trials Before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board and Judicial Review of Patent Trial and Appeal Board Decisions; Proposed Rules

To see the complete text of this comment request, access
http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-02-09/pdf/2012-2523.pdf#page=1

SUMMARY: The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act establishes several new trial proceedings to be conducted by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (Board) including inter partes review, post-grant review, the transitional program for covered business method patents, and derivation proceedings. The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act also requires the United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office or USPTO) to promulgate rules specific to each proceeding. In separate rulemakings elsewhere in this issue and in the February 10, 2012, issue of the Federal Register, the Office proposes rules relating to Board trial practice for the new proceedings. The Office publishes in this document a practice guide for the proposed trial rules to advise the public on the general framework of the proposed regulations, including the structure and times for taking action in each of the new
proceedings.

DATES: Written comments must be received on or before April 9, 2012 to ensure consideration.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Trademark Identification of Goods and Services Roundtable

On February 24 from 2:00-3:30 p.m. the USPTO will host a roundtable open to the public on USPTO’s trademark practice regarding identification of goods and services. The roundtable will be held in Madison Auditorium (South) at the USPTO campus in Alexandria, VA. The session will also be webcast. See the roundtable information page for more information and for instructions about accessing the webcast.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Dallas Roadshow Explaining Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA)

According to a Jan. 9, 2012 press release, USPTO personnel will travel to seven U.S. cities to allow the public to speak with USPTO officials about the new patent law and its implementation. The closest roadshow to us will be at the Dallas Public Library on Wednesday, February 29 from 10 am - 4:30 pm. Scroll down on the USPTO's Leahy-Smith American Invents Act Implementation page for more information. Registration is not required. Other cities included in the Roadshows are Alexandria, VA; Sunnyvale, CA; Salt Lake City, UT; Ft. Lauderdale, FL; Boston, MA; and Chicago, IL.