Search Team

Search by Last Name
A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
J
K
L
M
N
O
P
Q
R
S
T
U
V
W
X
Y
Z
Banner image

Recent Changes to USPTO Fees (Hint - They're Going Up!)

December 18, 2017

Recent Changes to USPTO Fees (Hint - They're Going Up!)

December 18, 2017

Back to Fish's Patent Blog

 

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) recently announced changes to its fee structure, scheduled to take effect on January 16, 2018.  The goal of the fee change is for the USPTO to provide sufficient financial resources to facilitate the effective administration of the U.S. intellectual property system.  In this article, we will analyze changes to frequently paid fees, and will provide a link to the complete table of patent fees.

Utility Application

Table 1 below shows the fees to file a utility application.  The total fee, which includes a filing fee, a search fee, an examination fee and an issue fee, will increase from $2,560 in FY 2017 to $2,720 in FY 2018, a change of 6%.  See Table 3 below for changes to excess claims fees.

Fee Current Large-Entity Rate Final Rule Large-Entity Rate Change
Utility Filing Fee $280 $300 7%
Utility Search Fee $600 $660 10%
Utility Examination Fee $720 $760 6%
Utility Issue Fee $960 $1,000 4%
Total $2,560 $2,720 6%

Table 1. Fee Structure for a Utility Application Filing (Large Entity)

Small and micro-entity discounts remain available for eligible applicants.  Maintenance fee rates remain unchanged for all three stages.

Post-Grant Proceedings: Inter Partes Review (IPR), Post-Grant Review (PGR), and Covered Business Method (CBM)

Table 2 below shows the fees for an IPR request (up by 72%), an IPR post-institution (up by 7%), PGR or CBM request (up by 33%) and PGR or CBM post-institution (up by 22%).

Fee Current Rate Final Rule Rate Change
IPR Request Fee – Up to 20 Claims $9,000 $15,500 72%
IPR Post-Institution Fee – Up to 15 Claims $14,000 $15,000 7%
PGR or CBM Review Request Fee – Up to 20 Claims $12,000 $16,000 33%
PGR or CBM Review Post-Institution Fee – Up to 15 Claims $18,000 $22,000 22%

Table 2.  Fee Structure for IPRs, PGRs and CBMs

According to the USPTO, the increase is based on two years of historical cost data and better aligns fees with costs, while enabling the PTAB to accomplish its mission.

Certain Frequently Paid Fees

Table 3 below shows changes to certain frequently paid fees – excess claims fees (up between 5% and 25%), IDS fees (up by 33%), RCE fees (up between 8% and 12%), and ex parte appeal fees (up by 12%).  No changes to fees for extensions of time have been set forth.

Fee Current Large-Entity Rate Final Rule Large-Entity Rate Change
Each Independent Claim in Excess of Three $420 $460 10%
Each Claim in Excess of 20 $80 $100 25%
Multiple Dependent Claim $780 $820 5%
Submission of an Information Disclosure Statement after First Action on the Merits (FAOM), before Notice of Allowance $180 $240 33%
Request for Continued Examination (RCE) – 1st Request $1,200 $1,300 8%
Request for Continued Examination (RCE) – 2nd and Subsequent Request $1,700 $1,900 12%
Notice of Appeal $800 $800 0%
Forwarding an Appeal in an Application or Ex Parte Reexamination Proceeding to the Board $2,000 $2,240 12%

Table 3.  Fee Structure for Excess Claims, IDS, RCE and Appeal

Design Application

Table 4 below shows the fees to file a design application.  The total fee, which includes a filing fee, a search fee, an examination fee and an issue fee, will increase from $1,320 in FY 2017 to $1,660, a change of 26%.

Fee Current Large-Entity Rate Final Rule Large-Entity Rate Percent Change
Design Filing Fee $180 $200 11%
Design Search Fee $120 $160 33%
Design Examination Fee $460 $600 30%
Design Issue Fee $560 $700 25%
Total $1,320 $1,660 26%

Table 4.  Fee Structure for a Design Patent Application Filing (Large Entity)

The USPTO explained that, under the current fee structure, the USPTO does not fully recover the costs incurred for processing design patent applications, in part because design patents do not pay maintenance fees, and the majority of applicants utilize small- and micro-entity fee reductions.

Plant Application

Table 5 below shows the fees to file a plant application.  The total fee, which includes a filing fee, a search fee, an examination fee and an issue fee, will increase from $1,900 in FY 2017 to $2,040, a change of 7%.

Fee Current Large-Entity Rate Final Rule Large-Entity Rate Change
Plant Filing Fee $180 $200 11%
Plant Search Fee $380 $420 11%
Plant Examination Fee $580 $620 7%
Plant Issue Fee $760 $800 5%
Total $1,900 $2,040 7%

Table 5.  Fee Structure for a Plant Patent Application Filing (Large Entity)

The USPTO explained that the reason for the increase in the plant patent application fees is the same as for the increase in the design patent application fees.

A detailed listing of the fee structure, which shows the increase in fees as well as the fee structures that have not changed, can be found here.

We constantly monitor such releases from the USPTO, which, while administrative in nature, have significant impact on our clients.  If you have any questions or if we can be of any assistance in this important area, please contact us.

Sushil Iyer: iyer@fr.com, 214-760-6141

Alycia Morell: morell@fr.com, 612-766-2053

Related Tags

patent
post-grant
USPTO
update
fee
application

Blog Authors

Headshot
Sushil Iyer, Ph.D. | Principal

Dr. Sushil Iyer (formerly Sushil Shrinivasan) is a Principal in the Dallas office of Fish & Richardson. His practice includes all aspects of patent law focusing on domestic and international patent preparation and prosecution in a broad range of technological areas including mechanical and chemical engineering (for example, oil and gas...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *