by Dennis Crouch
Provisional patent applications continue to remain popular, and the number of annual filings continue to rise at a moderate pace. In FY2011, more than 150,000 provisional applications were filed. That number is roughly the same as the number of original non-provisional applications filed by US entities during the same period. (Here, “original” means that the filing was not based on a prior non-provisional application or a foreign patent application). Of recent US patents issued that do not claim international priority, more than 1/3 claim priority to a provisional application filing. (This excludes applications claiming foreign & PCT priority).