By Donald Zuhn --
USPTO Selects Site of Detroit Satellite Office
In a press release issued earlier this month, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office announced that it had entered into a five-year lease agreement on a 31,000 square foot space at 300 River Place Drive in Detroit, where the Elijah J. McCoy USPTO will be located. The Detroit satellite office was so designated pursuant to § 24 of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (see "USPTO News Briefs," December 15, 2011). According to the announcement, the Office intends to open the Detroit satellite office no later than July 2012, and the satellite office is expected to create more than 100 new jobs during its first year. The Office asks prospective employees to send e-mail inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. The Office also reminded applicants and practitioners that it is currently in the process of collecting information on potential locations for future satellite offices. Written comments regarding possible locations must be submitted by January 30, 2012 (see "USPTO News Briefs," December 15, 2011, for information regarding the Office's Federal Register notice requesting comments).
USPTO to Hold Seven AIA Roadshows
In a press release issued on January 9, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office announced that it would be hosting a public series of educational "roadshows" regarding the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act. The roadshows will allow the public to speak with USPTO officials about the new patent law and its implementation. Seven roadshows have been scheduled, to be held at the following locations:
Friday, February 17
Friday, February 24
Sunnyvale Public Library
Monday, February 27
Marriott Library, University of Utah
Salt Lake City, UT
Wednesday, February 29
Dallas Public Library
Friday, March 2
Broward County Main Library
Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Monday, March 5
Boston Public Library
Wednesday, March 7
Chicago Public Library
USPTO Patent Reform Coordinator Janet Gongola commented that "[t]he USPTO hopes that the public will find the roadshows to be an ideal forum to engage with the Office about our various proposed rules implementing provisions of the America Invents Act," adding that "[t]he roadshows also give the agency the opportunity to visit members of the patent community in different parts of the country as part of our ongoing effort to create a 21st century patent and trademark office."
According to the USPTO's Leahy-Smith America Invents Act Implementation webpage, the agenda of the roadshows will be as follows:
Welcoming Remarks -- 10:00 – 10:30 am
Patent Related Provisions -- 10:30 – 11:15 am
Break -- 11:15 – 11:30 am
Patent Related Provisions -- 11:30 am – 12:30 pm
Lunch -- 12:30 – 1:30 pm
Contested Case Provisions -- 1:30 – 3:00 pm
Break -- 3:00 – 3:15 pm
Contested Case Provisions -- 3:15 – 4:30 pm
Patent Docs intends to attend and report on the Chicago roadshow.
USPTO Issues AIA-Mandated Reports
In a press release issued yesterday, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office announced that it had submitted to Congress two reports mandated by the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act. The first report concerns the scope of prior user rights defense in industrialized countries (see "USPTO Issues Report on Prior User Rights"), and the second report (prepared pursuant to AIA § 31) concerns international patent protections for small businesses.
According to the Office's announcement, the International Patent Protections for Small Businesses Report "considers how to best help small businesses with patent protection overseas, including whether a loan or grant program should be established to help small businesses cover the costs of application, maintenance, and enforcement fees or related technical assistance."
The Office noted that the AIA mandates that the USPTO conduct five more studies in the coming months. Next on the Office's agenda is the report on secondary genetic testing; the Office will be hosting public hearings and seeking written public comments as it did for the first two reports.