USPTO extends filing deadlines

USPTO Extends Certain Responsive Filing Deadlines to June 1, 2020blackboard with idea bubbleResponsive filings due between and inclusive of March 27 and May 31, 2020 are extended to June 1, 2020.

The new notices supersede the previously posted:

  • “Notice of Waiver of Patent-Related Timing Deadlines under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act,” dated March 31, 2020;
  • “Notice of Waiver of Trademark-Related Timing Deadlines under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act,” dated March 31, 2020; and
  • “Relief Available to Patent and Trademark Applicants, Patentees and Trademark Owners Affected by the Coronavirus Outbreak,” dated March 16, 2020.

Temporary authority to extend deadlines for filings was provided to the Director of the USPTO by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) signed by President Trump on March 27. See section 12004 (a) below:

(a) IN GENERAL.—During the emergency period described in subsection (e), the Director may toll, waive, adjust, or modify, any timing deadline established by title 35, United States Code, the Trademark Act, 19 section 18 of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (35 U.S.C. 321 note), or regulations promulgated thereunder, in effect during such period, if the Director determines that the emergency related to such period—

(1) materially affects the functioning of the Patent and Trademark Office;

(2) prejudices the rights of applicants, registrants, patent owners, or others appearing before the Office; or

(3) prevents applicants, registrants, patent owners, or others appearing before the Office from filing a document or fee with the Office.

Patent Applications

For patent applicants or owners, essentially any responsive filing such as a response to an office action or payment of an issue fee that is due between and inclusive of both March 27, 2020 and May 31, 2020 will be considered timely if filed on or before June 1, 2020, provided that the filing is accompanied by a statement that the delay in filing or payment was due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The USPTO Cares Act Notice provides a complete list of filings that can be delayed and further definition of what constitutes a delay in filing or payment due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Trademark Applications

For trademark applicants or owners, essentially any filing such as a response to an office action, filing of a statement of use, or filing of a declaration of use that is due between and inclusive of both March 27, 2020 and May 31, 2020 will be considered timely if filed on or before June 1, 2020, provided that the filing is accompanied by a statement that the delay in filing or payment was due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The USPTO Cares Act Notice provides a complete list of filings that can be delayed and further definition of what constitutes a delay in filing or payment due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Remember the USPTO remains open for the filing of documents and fees, whether you have already something pending or if you wish to file for protection of new intellectual property that can be protected by patent (inventions) or trademark registration (branding).

Author:
Kathleen Kuznick assists business owners, entrepreneurs and inventors with all things related to intellectual property and brand protection, including patents, trademarks, copyrights and licensing. She can be reached via email at Kathleen Kuznicki or (724) 776-8000.
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