Protect Software with Patent or Copyright Registration

Software may be protected by a copyright registration or a patent.  Copyright protection subsists at the time the software is created.  The owner of the copyright is the author of the software, or one for whom the software is made.  The owner has exclusive rights to display, reproduce and create derivative works of the software.  […]

First Action Non-Final Rejections

It is very common for the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to reject claims in a First Office Action.  According to a study reported in June 2010 by Patently-O, the nation’s leading patent law blog, 73-98 percent of patent applications received a First Action Non-Final Rejection, depending on the Technology Center.  I am […]

Forms for US Patent Applications filed on or after Sept 16, 2012

The USPTO has prepared fillable forms for use in patent applications filed on or after September 16, 2012.  The forms are available through the USPTO website.  These forms are provided prior to September 16, 2012 for informational purposes only.  

USPTO Considers Shortening First Section 8 Deadline

The USPTO is seeking public comment regarding an amendment of federal law to shorten the first filing deadline for demonstrating use or excusable nonuse of a registered trademark.  Though such a change requires legislative amendment of the Trademark Act, the USPTO is seeking public comment about such an amendment.  The change would function to promptly […]

USPTO Considering Adjustment in Trademark Application Fees

The USPTO is seeking public input regarding possible adjustments in trademark application fees, particularly lowering fees for applicants willing to file and communicate with the USPTO electronically, and raising fees for paper filed applications.  A Notice of Inquiry has been published in the Federal Register. Responses are due by October 15, 2012.

USPTO is Updating its Fee Processing System

The USPTO is revamping its fee collection system.  While it is looking to other eCommerce models for best practices, the USPTO is also soliciting input from users.  If you would like to participate, send your contact information to, together with your user status (i.e., independent inventor, in-house counsel, attorney or legal assistant) and the […]

USPTO Releases Trademark Status and Document Retrieval

In August, the USPTO released version 2.0 of the Trademark Status and Document Retrieval (TSDR) system.  This past weekend, the USPTO started redirecting all direct links to the Trademark Application and Registration Retrieval System (TARR) to the TSDR.  Next, weekend, it will redirect all links to the Trademark Document Retrieval (TDR) system to the TSDR.  […]

USPTO Announces Text2PTO, Online Text Filing

The USPTO plans to improve the application process by enabling the Office to accept text-based applications. This will allow applications to be filed in the same format in which the applications are most often prepared. This new service, called Text2PTO, builds on the existing Electronic Filing System (EFS). It is expected to improve efficiency by […]

Utility Models

Last summer, I attended an intellectual property seminar at a state bar function.  There was a panel of speakers, one of whom was a registered patent attorney and the General Counsel of a Fortune 500 company.  He admonished patent counsel attending the seminar for not promoting the use of utility models as an option for […]

Fee Schedule

2012 Fee Schedule