Tag Archives: Budget

Patent Office Funded Through Fiscal Year 2012

With last week’s passage of the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act (H.R. 2112), the USPTO finally has its spending authority set through the end of the current fiscal year, September 30, 2012. The bottom line is that the USPTO can spend up to $2.7 billion, assuming it collects that much in “fees and surcharges.”… Continue reading this entry

File Electronically To Avoid "Tax" On U.S. Patent Applications

The America Invents Act included two separate fee provisions with early effective dates. A 15% surcharge on many USPTO fees took effect on September 26, 2011. Next, a surcharge on patent applications that are not filed electronically will take effect on November 15, 2011.… Continue reading this entry

USPTO Fee Diversion Escalates With Higher User Fees

One of the first provisions of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act to take effect was the 15% surcharge on most USPTO user fees that the USPTO started collecting on September 26, 2011. As I wrote previously, the USPTO has not been able to spend any of the extra fees collected in the last few days … Continue reading this entry

USPTO Track I Fee-Based Prioritized Examination Available Now

As of September 26, 2011, applicants can seek fee-based prioritized examination under the USPTO’s Track I program. The September 23, 2011 Federal Register Notice sets forth the details of the program, which is largely identical to that previously set to take effect May 4, 2011, although the basic fee is higher. The USPTO decided not to … Continue reading this entry

Patent Reform--A Tax On Innovation?

The enactment of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act on September 16, 2011 means that a 15% surcharge on most patent office fees will take effect on September 26, 2011. (The USPTO has published the new fee schedule on its Leahy-Smith America Invents Act Implementation website). But, with no new appropriations, the USPTO will not be permitted … Continue reading this entry

USPTO Budget Cuts Halt Track I & Other USPTO Initiatives

On April 22, 2011, USPTO Director Kappos announced the impact of the budget reductions embodied in the fiscal year 2011 budget that finally was enacted on April 15, 2011. (Fiscal year 2011 runs through September 30, 2011). The budget gives the USPTO the authority to spend only $2.09 billion, which is about $100 million less … Continue reading this entry

USPTO To Remain Open--At Least For Now

Applicants facing USPTO deadlines over the next few days should not assume that the USPTO will be closed in the event of a federal government shutdown. Quite to the contrary, Director Kappos has informed USPTO personnel that the USPTO will remain open, at least in the near term. The Director’s message also indicates that, even in … Continue reading this entry

Stop Robbing Peter Patent to Pay Paul Public

As Congress continues to debate the federal budget, patent stakeholders are justifiably concerned that Direct Kappos’ efforts to improve the U.S. patent examination process, enhance patent quality, and reduce the backlog of unexamined applications will be thwarted by inadequate funding. Indeed, if Congress continues to divert hundreds of millions of the USPTO’s user fees to … Continue reading this entry