Thursday, July 30, 2015

July 2015 Update on Subject Matter Eligibility

The July 30, 2015 edition of the Federal Register (Vol. 80, no. 146) on page 45429 contains a request for comment about subject matter eligibility:

SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) prepared interim guidance (2014 Interim Patent Eligibility Guidance) for use by USPTO personnel in determining subject matter eligibility in view of then-recent decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court (Supreme Court). The USPTO published the 2014 Interim Patent Eligibility Guidance in the Federal Register, and sought public comment on the 2014 Interim Patent Eligibility Guidance. The USPTO has since produced an update pertaining to patent subject matter eligibility titled July 2015 Update: Subject Matter Eligibility, which is available to the public on the USPTO's Internet Web site, in response to the public comment on the 2014 Interim Patent Eligibility Guidance.

The July 2015 Update: Subject Matter Eligibility includes a new set of examples and discussion of various issues raised by the public comments, and is intended to assist examiners in applying the 2014 Interim Patent Eligibility Guidance during the patent examination process. The USPTO is now seeking public comment on the July 2015 Update: Subject Matter Eligibility.

COMMENT DEADLINE DATE:  To be ensured of consideration, written comments on July 2015 Update: Subject Matter Eligibility must be received on or before October 28, 2015.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

FREE Webinars in August -- Hosted by the USPTO and MBDA: Getting a Good Handle on Intellectual Property

Are the processes for securing intellectual property protection for your ideas, business tag lines, product names, or even registering your company’s name overwhelming for you? Well, we’re here to help by providing sound answers questions about patents, trademarks, and copyrights.

As part of a national intellectual property (IP) outreach program, the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), will co-host three free, one-hour webinars. These webinars will help business owners, entrepreneurs, institutions, law firms, and inventors gain useful advice, and recommendations by answering the most prevalent IP questions.

Register today for the webinar series and learn some valuable tips that will help to protect your innovations and market your products.

August 11 – IP Overview: What is Intellectual Property 
August 12 – Patents: Design Patents Update (Hague Agreement)
August 13 – General: Getting Assistance from the USPTO

Register at

All webinar begins at 1 p.m. Eastern Time

Monday, July 13, 2015

New Collaborative Search Pilot Program with the Japan Patent Office

From the Federal Register, Vol. 80, No. 132 (Friday, July 10, 2015) [Pages 39752-39759] [FR Doc No: 2015-16846]
SUMMARY: The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is initiating a joint Work Sharing Pilot Program with the Japan Patent Office (JPO) to study whether the exchange of search results between offices for corresponding counterpart applications improves patent quality and facilitates the examination of patent applications in both offices. In the pilot program, each office will conduct a prior artsearch for its corresponding counterpart application and exchange the search results with the other office before
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either office issues a communication concerning patentability to the applicant. As a result of this exchange of search results, the examiners in both offices may have a more comprehensive set of references before them when making their initial patentability determinations. Each office will accord special status to its counterpart application to first action. First Action Interview (FAI) pilot program procedures will be applied during the examination of the U.S. application and make the search results of record in the form of a Pre-Interview Communication.
DATES: Effective date: August 1, 2015.
Duration: Under the United States-Japan Collaborative Pilot (US-JP CSP) program, the USPTO and JPO will accept petitions to participate for two years from its effective date. During each year, the pilot program will be limited to 400 granted petitions, 200 granted petitions where USPTO performs the first search and JPO performs the second search, and 200 granted petitions where JPO performs the first search and USPTO performs the second search. The offices may extend the pilot program (with or without modification) for an additional amount oftime, if necessary. The offices reserve the right to terminate the pilot program at any time.
See the complete text at:

More information is also available from the Collaborative Search Pilot Program page at or by emailing CSP@USPTO.GOV.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

2nd Patent Quality Chat on July 14th

If you missed the first Patent Quality Chat webinar on June 9 hosted by Deputy Commissioner for Patent Examination Policy Drew Hirshfeld on the topic Clarity of Record, a one-hour video recording can be found at and is also linked on the Patent Quality Chat webpage along with the slide presentation.

On Tuesday, July 14 from 12:00 - 1:00 pm EDT, the second Patent Quality chat will be hosted by Director of Technology Center 2400 Timothy Callahan on the topic Face-to-Face Examiner Interviews: A Demonstration of USPTO Tools. See instructions for accessing the chat at (scroll down to the section, Webcast Instructions).

Regularly scheduled on the second Tuesday of each month, these Patent Quality Chats are a lunchtime webinar series designed to provide information on various patent quality topics and to continue the dialogue between the USPTO and its stakeholders about enhancing patent quality.

Future webinar dates of Sept. 8, Oct. 13, and Nov. 10 are scheduled and may include topics such as Office of Patent Quality Review (OPQA) Processes, Compact Prosecution, and Special Programs for Patent Prosecution. No registration is required for these free webinars.