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Section 44(d) Timeline: Application based on a foreign application

Place your mouse over the steps for more information on each step.

This timeline does not cover every application scenario. If you find that you are well outside of the listed timeframes, call your assigned examining attorney or the Trademark Assistance Center (TAC) at 571.272.9250.

Step 1. Application filed: The applicant filed its U.S. application within 6 months of filing its foreign application in a country that is party to a treaty or agreement with the United States. The applicant’s country of origin must also be a party to a treaty or agreement with the United States. However, the foreign application relied upon does not have to be from the applicant’s country of origin. Section 44(d) alone does not provide a basis for publication or registration and the applicant must later provide a Section 1(b), Section 1(a), and/or Section 44(e) basis. Approximately 3 months go to step 2.

Step 2. USPTO reviews application: If the minimum filing requirements for the U.S. application are met, the application is assigned to an examining attorney to determine whether federal law permits registration. Filing fee(s) will not be refunded, even if the application is later refused registration on legal grounds. Approximately 1 month go to step 3a or step 3b.

Step 3a. USPTO issues suspension letter: If no refusals or requirements are identified, the examining attorney issues a letter suspending the action pending the submission of the foreign registration certificate and an English translation thereof. Go to step 5.

Step 3b. USPTO issues a letter (Office action): If the examining attorney identifies any refusals or requirements, the examining attorney issues a letter (Office action). Within 6 months of the issue date of the Office action, the applicant must submit a response that addresses each refusal and/or requirement. Within 6 months go to step 4a or step 4b.

Step 4a. Applicant timely responds: To avoid abandonment of the application, the applicant must submit a timely response addressing each refusal and/or requirement stated in the Office action. The examining attorney will review the submitted response and will issue a letter suspending the application pending submission of the foreign registration certificate and English translation thereof and continuing any refusals and/or requirements. No action by the applicant, other then periodic status checks every 3 – 4 four months of the U.S. application (see http://tsdr.uspto.gov), is required until the examining attorney issues a letter inquiring as to the status of the foreign application. Within 1 to 2 months go to step 5.

Step 4b. Applicant does not respond and application abandons: If the applicant does not respond within 6 months from the date the Office action issued, the application is abandoned. The term “abandoned” means that the application process has ended and the trademark will not register. Filing fees are not refunded when applications abandon. Abandoned applications are “dead,” since they are no longer pending or under consideration for approval. To continue the application process, the applicant must file a petition to revive the application within 2 months of the abandonment date. If more than 2 months after the abandonment date, the petition will be denied as untimely and the applicant must file a new application with the appropriate fee(s).

Step 5. U.S. application suspended: No action by the applicant, other then periodic status checks every 3 – 4 months of the U.S. application (see http://tsdr.uspto.gov), is required. The application remains suspended until the examining attorney issues a letter inquiring as to the status of the foreign application. Approximately 6 months go to step 6.

Step 6. USPTO issues suspension inquiry: If the foreign registration certificate has not been submitted, the examining attorney will issue a letter inquiring as to the status of the foreign application. This cycle will continue every 6 months until the applicant submits its foreign registration certificate and English translation thereof. Within 6 months go to step 7a or step 7b or step 7c.

Step 7a. Applicant timely responds and does not submit foreign registration certificate: To avoid abandonment of the application, the applicant must submit a timely response indicating the status of the foreign application. If the foreign application is still pending, the examining attorney will issue a letter re-suspending the U.S. application. Go to step 5.

Step 7b. Applicant timely responds and submits foreign registration certificate: When the applicant has submitted its foreign registration certificate and English translation thereof, the U.S. application is removed from suspension and the examining attorney reviews the foreign registration to determine if the mark, owner, and goods/services agree with those in the U.S. application. Approximately 1 to 2 months go to step 8a or step 8b or step 8c.

Step 7c. Application does not respond and application abandons: If the applicant does not respond within 6 months from the date the Office action was issued, the application is abandoned. The term “abandoned” means that the application process has ended and the trademark will not register. Filing fees are not refunded when applications abandon. Abandoned applications are “dead,” since they are no longer pending or under consideration for approval. To continue the application process, the applicant must file a petition to revive the application within 2 months of the abandonment date. If more than 2 months after the abandonment date, the petition will be denied as untimely and the applicant must file a new application with the appropriate fee(s).

Step 8a. USPTO publishes mark: The examining attorney approves the mark for publication in the Official Gazette (OG). The OG, a weekly online publication, gives notice to the public that the USPTO plans to issue a registration. Approximately 1 month after approval, the mark will publish in the OG for a 30-day opposition period, which may be extended upon request by a potential opposer. No further action is taken until the opposition period (including any extensions of time) has expired and any oppositions are resolved. Approximately 3 months go to step 11.

Step 8b. USPTO issues final letter (Office action): If the foreign registration certificate is acceptable but previously raised issues remain, the examining attorney will issue a “final” Office action to which the applicant must respond within 6 months, an applicant may respond to a final Office action by (a) overcoming the refusals and complying with the requirements, or (b) appealing to the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. Within 6 months go to step 9a or step 9b.

Step 8c. USPTO issues letter (Office action): If the foreign registration is not acceptable, the examining attorney will issue a letter (Office action) to which the applicant must respond within 6 months. Within 6 months of the issue date of the Office action, the applicant must submit a response that addresses each refusal and/or requirement. Within 6 months go to step 8c-1 or step 8c-2.

Step 8c-1. Applicant timely responds: In order to avoid abandonment of the application, the applicant must submit a timely response addressing each refusal and/or requirement stated in the Office action. The examining attorney will review the submitted response to determine if all refusals and/or requirements have been satisfied. Approximately 1 to 2 months go to step 8c-1a or step 8c-1b.

Step 8c-2. Applicant does not respond and application abandons: If the applicant does not respond within 6 months from the date the Office action was issued, the application is abandoned. The term “abandoned” means that the application process has ended and trademark will not register. Filing fees are refunded when applications abandon. Abandoned “dead,” since they no longer pending or under consideration for approval. To continue process, applicant must file a petition revive within 2 months of abandonment date. If more than after date, be denied as untimely new with appropriate fee(s).

Step 8c-1a. USPTO publishes mark: The examining attorney approves the mark for publication in the Official Gazette (OG). The OG, a weekly online publication, gives notice to the public that the USPTO plans to issue a registration. Approximately 1 month after approval, the mark will publish in the OG for a 30-day opposition period, which may be extended upon request by a potential opposer. No further action is taken until the opposition period (including any extensions of time) has expired and any oppositions are resolved. Within 6 months go to step 9a or step 9b.

Step 8c-1b. USPTO issues final letter (Office action): If the applicant’s response fails to overcome the refusals and/or satisfy the outstanding requirements, the examining attorney will issue a “Final” refusal letter (Office action). The Office action makes “final” any remaining refusals or requirements. An applicant may respond to a final office action by a) overcoming the refusals and complying with the requirements or b) appealing to the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. Approximately 3 months go to step 11.

Step 9a. Application timely responds / Files appeal: To avoid abandonment of the application, the applicant must submit a timely response addressing each refusal and/or requirement stated in the “final” Office action. Alternatively, or in addition to the response, the applicant may also submit a Notice of Appeal to the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB). The examining attorney will review the submitted response to determine if all refusals and/or requirements have been satisfied. If the applicant’s response fails to overcome the refusals and/or satisfy the outstanding requirements, the application will be abandoned unless the applicant has filed a Notice of Appeal, in which case the application is forwarded to the TTAB. The term “abandoned” means that the application process has ended and the trademark will not register. Filing fees are not refunded when applications abandon. Abandoned applications are “dead” since they are no longer pending or under consideration for approval. Approximately 1 to 2 months go to step 10a or step 10b.

Step 9b. Applicant does not respond and application abandons: If the applicant does not respond within 6 months from the date the Office action was issued, the application is abandoned. The term “abandoned” means that the application process has ended and the trademark will not register. Filing fees are not refunded when applications abandon. Abandoned applications are “dead,” since they are no longer pending or under consideration for approval. To continue the application process, the applicant must file a petition to revive the application within 2 months of the abandonment date. If more than 2 months after the abandonment date, the petition will be denied as untimely and the applicant must file a new application with the appropriate fee(s).

Step 10a. USPTO publishes mark: If the applicant’s response overcomes the refusals and/or satisfies all requirements, the examining attorney approves the mark for publication in the Official Gazette (OG). The OG, a weekly online publication, gives notice to the public that the USPTO plans to issue a registration. Approximately 1 month after approval, the mark will publish in the OG for a 30-day opposition period, which may be extended upon request by a potential opposer. No further action is taken until the opposition period (including any extensions of time) has expired and any oppositions are resolved. Approximately 3 months go to step 11.

Step 10b. Applicant’s appeal sent to TTAB: If the applicant’s response does not overcome the refusals and/or satisfy all of the requirements and the applicant has filed a Notice of Appeal with the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB), the appeal will be forwarded to the TTAB. Information about the TTAB can be found at www.uspto.gov.

Step 11. Mark registers: Within approximately 3 months after the mark published in the Official Gazette (OG), if no opposition was filed, the USPTO issues a registration. If an opposition was filed but it was unsuccessful, the registration issues when the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board dismisses the opposition. After a registration issues, to keep the registration “alive,” the registrant must file specific maintenance documents. Between 5 to 6 years go to step 12 or every 10 years go to step 13.

Step 12. Registration owner files section 8 declaration: Before the end of the 6-year period after the registration date, or within the 6-month grace period after the expiration of the sixth year, the registration owner must file a Declaration of Use or Excusable Nonuse under Section 8. Failure to file this declaration will result in the cancellation of the registration.

Step 13. Registration owner files section 8 declaration/section 9 renewal: Within 1 year before the end of every 10-year period after the registration date, or within the 6-months grace period thereafter, the registration owner must file a Combined Declaration

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Last Modified: 9/28/2012 11:20:00 AM