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Wednesday, 28 March 2007

Superfast patent


ThomasNet reports that the USPTO has granted its first patent under the expedited review process, whereby the application in processed in 6 months, rather than the usual 24. Although this patent was granted in 6 months, the stated duration of the new process is 12 months. In order to qualify, applicants must provide more detailed information than usual to the USPTO.

The IPKat watches with interest at a time when Andrew Gowers has recommended that the UK Patent Office offer expedited services.

2 comments:

Gerontius said...

I wasn't aware the Patent Office needed to do anything more than they are already.

File a patent app with a request for search and examination and you'll get something back from them within 6 months. Respond quickly to objections and you're again likely to get a response from the UKPO pretty quickly.

Request early publication, wait the three months while the app is open to public inspection and you can still quite easily get a granted patent within a year.

I personally think that "too" expedited a procedure is as bad as too slow a procedure. Giving third parties a chance to comment on a pending application is a good thing (something which I think is a failure of the EPC). Not granting a patent within the initial year/18 months to search for intervening publications is (sometimes) a good thing.

Guy said...

For a USPTO applicant a rapid patent grant can be a mixed blessing. If there is a PCT or EPO equivalent it is likely that the search report will not issue until after the US patent has been granted. It is not unusual for the EPO searches to produce relevant prior art not found by the USPTO. The patent then has to be re-examined under the duty of candour requirements of US patent law. The USPTO files show this is happening under the existing system.

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