We previously reported that the United States Patent and Trademark Office granted a 30 day extension for many proceedings in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The time period for this extension has been extended. As of time of publication, the USPTO has issued Orders granting a 30 day extension for (1) the specific filings set forth below that (2) had deadlines which fell between March 27, 2020 and May 31, 2020, extending the time period from the prior cut-off of April 30. To invoke this extension, the filing must be accompanied by a statement that the delay in responding was due to the COVID-19 outbreak as specified in the Order.
- reply to an Office notice issued during pre-examination processing by a small or micro entity;
- reply to an Office notice or action issued during examination or patent publication processing;
- issue fee;
- notice of appeal under 35 U.S.C. § 134 and 37 C.F.R. § 41.31;
- appeal brief under 37 C.F.R. § 41.37;
- reply brief under 37 C.F.R. § 41.41;
- appeal forwarding fee under 37 C.F.R. § 41.45;
- request for an oral hearing before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) under 37 C.F.R. § 41.47;
- response to a substitute examiner’s answer under 37 C.F.R. § 41.50(a)(2);
- amendment when reopening prosecution in response to, or request for rehearing of, a PTAB decision designated as including a new ground of rejection under 37 C.F.R. § 41.50(b);
- maintenance fee, filed by a small or micro entity; or
- request for rehearing of a PTAB decision under 37 C.F.R. § 41.52.
- response to an Office action, including a notice of appeal from a final refusal, under 15 U.S.C. § 1062(b) and 37 C.F.R. §§ 2.62(a) and 2.141(a);
- statement of use or request for extension of time to file a statement of use under 15 U.S.C. § 1051(d) and 37 C.F.R. §§ 2.88(a) and 2.89(a);
- notice of opposition or request for extension of time to file a notice of opposition under 15 U.S.C. § 1063(a) and 37 C.F.R. §§ 2.101(c) and § 2.102(a);
- priority filing basis under 15 U.S.C. § 1126(d)(1) and 37 C.F.R. § 2.34(a)(4)(i);
- priority filing basis under 15 U.S.C. § 1141g and 37 C.F.R. § 7.27(c);
- transformation of an extension of protection to the United States into a U.S. application under 15 U.S.C. § 1141j(c) and 37 C.F.R. § 7.31(a);
- affidavit of use or excusable nonuse under 15 U.S.C. § 1058(a) and 37 C.F.R. § 2.160(a);
- renewal application under 15 U.S.C. § 1059(a) and 37 C.F.R. § 2.182; or
- affidavit of use or excusable nonuse under 15 U.S.C. § 1141k(a) and 37 C.F.R. § 7.36(b).
Please note that the Order is limited to certain filings and does not extend the deadlines to file patent applications with the USPTO. Anyone seeking to maintain provisional patent application priority should immediately consult with his or her attorney. Additionally, the continued extensions are placing some pending trademark applications in limbo. Ordinarily, trademark applications are published for a period of 30 days to allow third parties to oppose the mark. Because the Trademark Order extends the opposition period, applications cannot complete this stage of the application process and pass to the next stage, which is typically allowance.