Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) - Fast Track Examination of Applications
The Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) speeds up the examination process for corresponding applications filed in participating intellectual property offices.
Under PPH, participating patent offices have agreed that when an applicant receives a final ruling from a first patent office that at least one claim is allowed, the applicant may request fast track examination of corresponding claim(s) in a corresponding patent application that is pending in a second patent office. PPH leverages fast-track examination procedures already in place among participating patent offices to allow applicants to reach final disposition of a patent application more quickly and efficiently than standard examination processing.
There is no fee under the PPH programs. For further information, please see this Federal Register notice.
For more information on the PPH in general, please see these PPH resources:
- Overview of the Patent Prosecution Highway (Video)
- PPH Brochure [HTML] [PDF]
- Form for the Global PPH and IP5 PPH pilot programs
- Other Countries Request Forms
Requesting Accelerated Examination Under PPH
We are pleased to announce that on January 6, 2014, the USPTO launched pilots that simplify access to participating PPH offices. The new pilots – formulated under Global PPH and IP5 PPH auspices – replace existing forms and procedures that were unique to each PPH country pairing, with one form and common rules for participating countries.
The Global PPH and IP5 PPH pilot programs will run concurrently and are substantially identical, differing only with regard to their respective participating offices (see diagram below). Because the USPTO has elected to participate in both the Global PPH pilot program and the IP5 PPH pilot program, a PPH request may be filed in the USPTO based on the work product of any office participating in either pilot program. Furthermore, because the respective requirements for the Global PPH and IP5 PPH pilot programs are equivalent, USPTO applicants need not specify which pilot program is being utilized.
Any earlier, positive results (whether PCT or national work product) from any of the IP offices in the above diagram may potentially form a basis for PPH status at the USPTO under these new simplified pilot programs. All the countries listed can use the single request form found in the link below. The strategic possibilities are countless for IP owners!
Learn more about the Global PPH pilot at the Global PPH section of the PPH portal Web site.
Other Patent Prosecution Highway Programs
In addition to the Global PPH and IP5 PPH pilot programs, the USPTO has PPH agreements with the following Intellectual Property Offices around the world. These countries are not yet included in the Global PPH so applicants must use the special forms noted in the table. For information, requirements and the request form for each of the PPH programs, click on the links below:
PPH Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) (August 2011)
PCT-PPH press release (November 2009)
PCT-PPH (with KIPO) press release (April 16, 2010)
PPH News: View the latest updates on USPTO’s Patent Prosecution Highway program and learn what others are saying about PPH.
Electronic filing support is available through the Patent Electronic Business Center (EBC) at 866-217-9197 (toll-free) or 571-272-4100 from 6 a.m. to 12 Midnight Eastern Time, Monday – Friday, or by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the Plurilateral PPH Framework see the Plurilateral PPH Portal Web Site
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