Most Read Contributor in South Africa, September 2016
Certain official fees charged by the United States Patent and
Trade Mark Office ("USPTO"), for the filing and
prosecution of various applications, are set to decrease on January
These proposed changes have an effect on PCT International Stage
fees, Post-Allowance fees and fees for recordal of assignments.
The following are examples of some of the official fee savings
which may affect our clients after the 1 January 2014:
Issue fees for Patent applications/Utility model applications
will decrease by almost 50%;
Issue fees for Design applications will also decrease by almost
Publication fees for voluntary, early or normal publication
have been scrapped; and
The fees for recording a patent assignment, agreement or other
paper, electronically, will also be totally eliminated.
(these fees are subject to whether the entity
qualifies as a large entity, a small entity or a micro entity. An
applicant will qualify for small entity status if it is a single
inventor and the invention hasn't been licensed to a large
entity. Small entities are granted approximately 50% reduction in
fees. An applicant will qualify for micro entity status if (1) the
inventor has not been named as the inventor or a joint inventor on
more than four previously filed U.S. patent applications, (2) the
inventor had a gross income in the year prior to filing of less
than US $150,000, and (3) the inventor is not under an obligation
to assign, grant, or convey a license or other ownership to another
entity with the gross income in the year prior to filing of more
than US $150,000. Micro entities are granted approximately 75%
reduction in fees. All other entities will qualify as large
Of possible interest to Small Entity and Micro Entity clients,
may be the option of filing a PCT application in the USA, due to
the fact that the following fees will be substantially reduced:
The transmittal fee to the International Bureau as the
Supplemental search fees;
Preliminary examination fees; and
Late payment fees.
(Large entities will not be granted these fee
Various applicants, who have received notices of
allowance on or after 1 October 2013, will benefit from substantial
cost savings as the payment of the issue fee for their applications
will be due after the 1 January 2014.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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