The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office(USPTO) issued a notice on March 16, 2020 that it will provide relief to patent and trademark applicants and owners affected by the coronavirus outbreak.
For patent applicants or patent owners who were unable to timely reply to an Office communication because of the coronavirus outbreak, the USPTO will waive the petition fee for revival if the application is held abandoned or the reexamination prosecution terminated or limited as a result. The petition must include the circumstances under which the applicant, or at least one inventor was personally affected by the Coronavirus outbreak, such that they were unable to file a timely reply.
The USPTO will likewise apply a waiver to applicants or owners whose trademark applications and registrations were abandoned or canceled or expired based on missed deadlines because of the coronavirus outbreak.
It should be noted, that these waivers only apply in certain circumstances, and that the notice does not grant waivers or extensions of dates or requirements set by statute. Some examples of patent deadlines that are not extendable include the filing of new applications claiming the benefit of foreign applications, U.S. utility applications, or U.S. provisional applications. Please see the USPTO notice for a comprehensive list.
At OGRP we are well equipped to handle the current situation, as we have a robust cloud based docketing system and remote access software, so that our attorneys and staff can work from any location, and continue to assist you with upcoming deadlines in any event.
For the latest information on the USPTO’s response, please visit https://www.uspto.gov/coronavirus