USPTO Issues Final Rule on Setting, Adjusting Patent Fees

August 6, 2020 Advisory

On Aug. 3, 2020, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued a Final Rule with broad implications for setting and adjusting 296 patent fees for large, small and micro entities, including the introduction of five new fees and the discontinuation of four fees.

The adjustments fall into three major categories:

  • 5% across the board adjustment to most patent fees
  • Targeted fee adjustments
  • Discontinued fees

Patent practitioners should pay close attention to the changes the rule affords. Items of particular interest include:

  • Delayed implementation of the non-DOCX filing fee surcharge until Jan. 1, 2022.
  • An annual active patent practitioner fee will not be implemented at this time. The USPTO intends to recognize patent practitioners who certify completion of Continuing Legal Education (CLE) in the online practitioner directory. The USPTO intends to issue proposed CLE guidelines, addressing the types of CLE courses that may qualify for recognition, as well as the form of recognition, with a request for public comments.
  • Introduction of a fee for Pro Hac Vice admission (counsel who are not registered practitioners to be granted admission in limited circumstances).
  • Most AIA Trial fees are increasing by 25%. The post-institutional threshold for paying claims fees will increase from 15% to 20%.
  • Discontinuation of the fee for USPTO-assisted recovery of ID or reset of password for the Office of Enrollment and Discipline (OED) Information System.

For additional information, visit the USPTO’s Fee Setting and Adjusting web page.

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