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June 25, 2010

CONTACT: Peter Pappas or Jennifer Rankin Byrne

(571) 272-8400 or peter.pappas1@uspto.gov;

jennifer.rankin_byrne@uspto.gov;

Press Release, 10-28

USPTO and the Hungarian Patent Office to Pilot Patent Prosecution Highway

Washington – The Commerce Department’s United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the Hungarian Patent Office have agreed to partner in establishing a Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) pilot program. PPH agreements are cooperative initiatives that streamline the patent system and promote expeditious, inexpensive and high-quality patent protection throughout the world. The USPTO and HPO plan to launch the pilot program on July 1, 2010, and continue for a period of one year.

“The amount of repetitious work involved in examining patent filings first filed in other patent offices represents a significant impact on the USPTO’s workload and the workload of other offices, and contributes to our backlog and long pendency periods,” said Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO David Kappos. “Work sharing with other similarly skilled examiners in other patent offices such as the Hungarian Patent Office is one of our most important tools to speed patent examination and enhance quality.”

“Creative exploitation of synergies is the hidden reserve of the patent world”, said President of the Hungarian Patent Office Miklós Bendzsel. “Utilization of the results of patent examinations, performed according to common quality standards for the benefit of our clients, may accelerate technology transfer between the USA and Hungary, as well as enhance co-operation in the field of innovation. The efforts and performance of the USPTO serve as benchmark for us in diminishing the impact of the crisis and facilitating economic recovery.”

Under PPH agreements, an applicant receiving a favorable ruling from one nation's patent office on at least one claim in an application may request that the corresponding application filed with the other nation be fast tracked for examination. By coordinating patentable results between both nations' offices, applicants can expect to obtain patents in both nations more quickly.

USPTO requirements for participation in the U.S.-Hungarian PPH are available at: 

www.uspto.gov/patents/init_events/pph/

Hungarian Patent Office requirements for participation can be found at: 

www.mszh.hu/English/szabadalom/pph/

The USPTO and the Hungarian Patent Office will continue to evaluate the needs of applicants and the progress of the PPH. Discussions on revisions to the requirements and to improve the procedure of the PPH will be ongoing.

The pilot program may be extended if necessary to adequately assess the feasibility of the PPH program. Notification of any revisions will be posted on the websites of each office.

For non-press inquiries contact Magdalen Greenlief at 571-272-8850 or at Magdalen.Greenlief@uspto.gov.

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