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

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

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: The USPTO prefers comments be submitted via electronic mail message to 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 . 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.