PTO: Patent Quality Chat and Fee Setting

Upcoming PTO Events in at the HQ in Arlington:

  1. August 2, 2018 (9 am to 3 pm ET): PPAC Meeting [Webcast]
  2. August 14, 2018 (Noon to 1 pm ET): Patent Quality Chat: AIA Trial Statistics from PTAB and Using AIA Trials to Enhance Patent Examination
  3. September 6, 2018 (9 am to 11 am ET): PPAC discussion of New FEES. 

USPTO is planning to exercise its fee setting authority to set or adjust patent fees. As part of the rulemaking proceeding for the issuance of regulations under Section 10, the USPTO will publish a proposed patent fee schedule and related supplementary information for public viewing no later than August 29, 2018.

7 thoughts on “PTO: Patent Quality Chat and Fee Setting

  1. 3

    When was the last fee diversion and when will be the next one?

  2. 2

    I would also love to see how any post grant mechanisms are going to be linked back into (actual) examination efforts – clearly hoping that it is not just a euphemism of examination quality that is being bandied about. Having been involved in the real world in which after market repair and warranty WAS provided an actual feedback mechanism into the front end of the manufacturing process, I have yet to see anything close and to a meaningful analogue be suggested for the variety of post-grant “quality” mechanisms.

    Maybe I will be pleasantly surprised…

    1. 2.1

      Yes, I had suggested several times in the past this subject of using PTAB decisions in the quality review process. The prior PTO response was the argument that the appeal decision was too long after the examiner’s decision to be useful. That is not true these days for many ex parte application appeal decisions where the same examiner is still there. One example could be MCLE requirements for examiners with plural 101 rejections and/or 103 rejections reversed on appeal. Also, rewarding examiners where the prior art cited in a denied IPR petition or a PTAB decision was not found to be substantively better that the prior art the examiner had found and cited.

      1. 2.1.1

        Good ideas Paul.

      2. 2.1.2

        “rewarding examiners where the prior art cited in a denied IPR petition or a PTAB decision was not found to be substantively better that the prior art the examiner had found and cited.”

        That would probably take at a junior-deputy-assistant director FTE to implement and the incentive power would be incredibly weak with the probably of any given grant being PGRed being relatively low. Sounds feel good but likely not cost effective.

        1. 2.1.2.1

          Not if it was based simply on the IPR petition being denied, since that indicates that the IPR petitioner’s expensive prior art search did not come up with anything better?

  3. 1

    I have to wonder as to what rigor the fee setting materials will present. I do not think that the Office has ever met the stringent requirements for fee setting to remain “neutral” in the aggregate – notably, ANY fee increases must be offset by fee decreases somewhere else such that a zero-sum net is realized.

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