By: Shirlene Jackson-Beckford PhD

The USPTO has announced an increase to its official fees which will come into effect on October 2, 2020. Most USPTO official fees are going up by about 5-7%. Fees relating to filing, search, examination, excess claims, and PCT international and national stages are all affected.

There are some exceptions to the average increase. The fees for issue and maintenance (due at 3.5 years) of a patent will increase by at least 20%, while the surcharge for late payment of all maintenance fees will increase by 213% to $500. Most notable, the fee increase for filing a petition for inter partes review (IPR) of a patent is at least 23%. For those interested in initiating an IPR proceeding challenging up to 20 claims, it is worth noting that filing the request before October 2, 2020 could save you at least $11,000 on USPTO official fees. Request for expedited examination of a design application will jump from $900 to $1,600.

The USPTO introduced a new fee for utility non-provisional filings submitted in a format other than DOCX, which becomes effective on January 1, 2022.

More details of the fee increase can be found HERE.

For any specific questions about the 2020 USPTO official fee increase, please contact Meunier Carlin & Curfman LLC.