USPTO issued the finalized regulation on Federal Register on 3rd August, which announced to adjust the official fee in 2020 fiscal year, i.e. increasing the request fee for the accelerated examination of design patents ( to increase 700 USD$ for large entity), increasing the request fee of two parties’ petition of review to PTAB (to increase 3500 USD$ for large entity). The finalized regulation will come into effect on 2nd October 2020.
The General Director of USPTO has been authorized as per Article 10 of America Invents Act (AIA) to set up or adjust the patents fees and trademark fees that are confirmed, authorized or collected according to Article 35 of United States Code and Trademark Law of Year 1946 (Article 15-1051 of United States Code). When confirming the fee, the total income of patents only to be used for paying the total cost of anticipated operation of trademark, including the administrative management fee of USPTO.
When USPTO proposed to set up or adjust fees regarding “the application, search, review, issuance, appeal and maintenance of application of patents and patents” that are allowed by AIA, these proposed fees will reduce 50% of new increasing fee for small entity in accordance with (10) b of AIA, and will reduce 75% of new increasing fee for the minisize entity. The applicant who can enjoy 50% discount must conform to the definition of “small entity” that described by 35-41(h)(1) of AIA. Applicants who can enjoy 75% discount must conform to the definition of “minisize entity” that described by 11(g) of AIA.
Adjustment of fees aims to obtain enough income, in order to cover the total cost for the operation of patents in the future and to realize USPTO’s strategic target.
Four kinds of fees will be adjusted under the finalized regulation
The patent fee will be overall adjusted around 5%， 2% of yearly increase aims to help USPTO to response the inflation for realizing its’ strategic target.
The important adjustment for the special fee aims to make effective management over the intellectual property right and to pay the cost to partial service.
USPTO newly added the application fee for non-DOCX (USD$ 400, to be implemented in January 2020), and newly added the fee for allowing some attorneys temporarily handle a special case in some judicial area (USD$ 250 per half year).
Termination of four fees, of which three fees were related with patent service, one was related to recovery of ID or re-set password.
Main increase fee for October 2020,
As per the Adjustment Table of Patents Fee, the increase rate of many fees are over 5%, specifics are as follows:
-Issuance Fee: $1200, increasing 20%
-The first (3.5 years) maintaining fee: $2000, increasing 25%
-Extra fee for overdue payment for maintenance: $500, increasing 21.3%
-Fee for accelerating the review of design patent: $1600, increasing 78%
-Fee for the request of reexamination: $19000, increasing 23%
-Fee for the request of reexamination after the authorization: $20000, increasing: 25%
-Fee for application, search and review of patent for invention increasing 5%(over $1 million), total amounted $ 1820. PCT applies for delivery and search added $ 120, total amounted $2440.
USPTO points that, in view of the current situation of US economy, also kinds of epidemic relief offered to all parties concerned by USPTO. The effective date of the finalized regulations has been postponed from July 2020 to October 2020. Just like the explanation made by USPTO in Federal Register, the change of fees aims to provide USPTO with enough fiscal resource, further to promote the effective management of US IPR system, including to improve the patent’s quality and effectiveness, support the work of PTAB, to elevate the quality, efficiency and productivity of the operation of patents, also to improve USPTO IT system.