The Patent Prosecution Highway in Conjunction With the German Patent and Trade Mark Office (DPMA)
Under the Patent Prosecution Highway, an applicant receiving a ruling from either the German Patent and Trade Mark Office (DPMA) or the USPTO that at least one claim in an application is patentable may request that the other office fast track the examination of corresponding claims in corresponding applications. The Patent Prosecution Highway leverages fast-track patent examination procedures already available in both offices to allow applicants in both countries to obtain corresponding patents faster and more efficiently.
As of May 25, 2010, the USPTO has eliminated the fee for the petition to make special under the PPH programs.
The initial Patent Prosecution Highway pilot program between the USPTO and the DPMA commenced on April 27, 2009. On April 27, 2013, the USPTO implemented PPH 2.0 with respect to the DPMA. PPH 2.0 simplified the PPH requirements and procedures in a consolidated and user-friendly framework, while at the same time ensuring that work sharing benefits to the USPTO are not diminished.
It is important to note that PPH 2.0 has only been implemented at the USPTO at this time, i.e., unilaterally. In short, the revised requirements apply to PPH requests filed at the USPTO on or after April 27, 2013, based on claims that have been determined allowable in a corresponding application filed in the DPMA.
The trial period for the USPTO's PPH 2.0 program with respect to the DPMA has been extended until April 26, 2017. The USPTO and the DPMA will evaluate the results of the PPH 2.0 program to determine whether and how the program should be implemented after the trial period. The offices may also terminate the PPH 2.0 program early if the volume of participation exceeds a manageable level or for any other reason. Notice will be published if the PPH 2.0 program with respect to the DPMA will be terminated before April 26, 2015.
Patent Prosecution Highway Requests to USPTO
Patent Prosecution Highway Requests to DPMA
How to make a request (published by the DPMA, includes links to request form)
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