By Donald Zuhn --
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office announced today that it plans to open three more satellite offices in addition to the satellite office to be opened later this month in Detroit, MI. The additional offices will be located in Dallas, TX; Denver, CO; and in California's Silicon Valley. The announcement ends a process that began last November when the USPTO requested comments and information from stakeholders regarding potential cities and regions for future locations of the satellite offices (see "USPTO News Briefs," December 15, 2011). As a result of that request, the USPTO received more than 600 public comments. In addition to reviewing public comments, the Office also noted that "USPTO officials met with hundreds of state and local officials, congressional delegations, and policy leaders," and further, that "[t]he selection team developed a model to evaluate over 50 Metropolitan Statistical Areas based on the previously stated criteria to assess operational cost and feasibility, ability to improve patent quality, and ability to employ U.S. veterans." In selecting the satellite offices, the USPTO exercised its authority under to § 23 of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act to establish three of more satellite offices in the United States by September 16, 2014, subject to available resources. Last December, the USPTO indicated that it would establish at least two more satellite offices. The USPTO also noted in today's statement that the Detroit satellite office would be opening on July 13, as the Office originally announced at the end of May (see "USPTO News Briefs," May 23, 2012).