The United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office or USPTO) proposes to set or adjust patent fees as authorized by the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (Act or AIA). The proposed fees will provide the Office with a sufficient amount of aggregate revenue to recover its aggregate cost of patent operations, while helping the Office implement a sustainable funding model, reduce the current patent application backlog, decrease patent pendency, improve patent quality, and upgrade the Office's patent business information technology (IT) capability and infrastructure. The Office also proposes to reduce fees for micro entities under section 10(b) of the Act (75 percent discount). The proposed fees also will further key policy considerations. For example, the proposal includes multipart and staged fees for requests for continued examination and appeals, both of which aim to increase patent prosecution options for applicants.
Agency Contact: Michelle Picard, Office of the Chief Financial Officer, by telephone at (571) 272-6354; or Dianne Buie, Office of Planning and Budget, by telephone at (571) 272-6301.
This is a proposed regulation. Comments were due on November 5, 2012.