COVID-19: CARES Act Extends USPTO Deadlines

traverselegal - April 2, 2020 - Coronavirus Legal Issues, Patent Law, Trademark Law

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Coronavirus has had an impact on all individuals, industries and businesses, including attorneys and their clients that have pending trademark and patent applications. Do you have a trademark or patent deadline with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) between March 27, 2020 and April 30, 2020 that may be affected by the COVID-19 outbreak? If so, you may be in luck. The recently enacted Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (“CARES”) Act has provided the USPTO with the ability to extend time to file certain trademark and patent documents.

Trademark Deadline Extensions

If you are unable to meet trademark-related timing deadlines due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be eligible for a waiver and a 30-day extension. To obtain this extension, you will need to accompany your filing with a statement that the delay in filing or payment was due to the COVID-19 outbreak. A few situations where extensions are available include:

A full list of trademark situations where extensions are available may be found here.

Patent Deadline Extensions

Similar to trademarks, if you are not able to meet patent-related deadlines due to Coronavirus, you may also be eligible for a waiver and 30-day extension. Again, to obtain this extension, you need to accompany your filing with a statement that the delay in filing or payment was due to the COVID-19 outbreak. A few situations where extensions are available include:

  • Responding to an Office Action;
  • Paying an issue fee;
  • Filing appeal documents; and
  • Paying maintenance fees, filed by a small or micro entity.

A full list of patent situations where extensions are available may be found here.

Altogether, to obtain relief from the USPTO on trademark or patent deadlines, your statement must demonstrate how you were impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak, including, without limitation, through office closures, cash flow interruptions, inaccessibility of files or other materials, travel delays, personal or family illness, or similar circumstances, such that the outbreak is materially interfering with your timely filing or payment.

Are you concerned about the status of your trademark and/or patent and unable to meet deadlines due to the Coronavirus pandemic? Have questions about the trademark and patent process in general? Need to file a trademark or patent application? Traverse Legal’s expert attorneys can help. Contact us today to learn how we can assist with any of your USPTO filing needs.

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This page has been written, edited, and reviewed by a team of legal writers following our comprehensive editorial guidelines. This page was approved by attorney Enrico Schaefer, who has more than 20 years of legal experience as a practicing Business, IP, and Technology Law litigation attorney.