Tim Palmer helped me to grab some data for a new paper on patent office statistics. Here are some preliminary results:
Using data from Series 10 (Serial No. 10/xxx,xxx) with filing dates from October 2001 through May 2005, I created a simple cumulative percentage table showing the expected time delay for a first office action. As can be seen, around seven percent of cases receive a first OA within the first six months, and the median delay is between one and two years. Of course, this table is slightly skewed because the October 2001 start date does not allow for delays of more than four years.
DELAY AFTER FILING UNTIL FIRST OFFICE ACTION
Three Months 1% Six Months 7% Nine Months 18% One Year 32% Two Years 82% Three Years 96%