Status of Certification Services

   On November 28, 1995, the Office published an Official Gazette Notice
entitled "Temporary Suspension of At Cost Services for Orders for
Certified Copies" (1180 OG 121) to advise practitioners and the public
of delays in filling orders for certified copies of PTO documents. This
is an update of actual days to mail for orders filled during the month
of August 1998:

Certified Product                       Goal            Actual
                                                        to Mail

Patent Application-As-Filed,              7                6
Patent Application-As-Filed,             17               10
Patent Related File Wrapper              25               67*
Patent Copy                              10                4
Patent Assignments                       10                5

Trademark Application-As-Filed,           7                6
Trademark Application-As-Filed,          17                8
Trademark Related File Wrapper           25               33*
Trademark Assignments                    10                7
Trademark Registration, Expedited         5                3
Trademark Registration, Regular          14                8

* Includes turnaround times for files on official search and file

The backlog of orders resulting from the relocation of the Office of
Public Records in late March and early April has been worked down.
During the month of August 1998, a total of 13,312 orders (26,126
copies) were filled and closed, or 4,788 orders (8,818 copies) more than
the FY-98 planning number of 8,524 orders (17,308 copies) to be closed
per month. The average turnaround times for products is returning to
expected ranges as older orders are filled and closed.

Due to varying availability of media, customers will not be advised when
orders are not delivered within the published goal periods. However,
customers will be advised if any unexpected delay in their order has
been identified. Customers should use the above actual days to mail for
each product as a guide as to when they can expect their orders. In
determining expected delivery times, the day an order is received in the
Office is calculated as "day zero." The next business day is "day one."

Delivery of any specific copy will vary based on the availability of
scanned images, microfilm products, and/or file accessibility. On June
10, 1997, the Office published an Official Gazette Notice entitled
"Changes in Practice in Supplying Certified Copies and Filing Receipts"
(1199 OG 39) which advised customers who place orders for certified
copies of patent applications-as-filed not to request them until the
official filing receipt is received; images and related bibliographic
data are not available to Certification Division until the filing
receipt is generated by the Office of Initial Patent Examination.

Customers are encouraged to fax orders for copies directly to
Certification Division at (703) 308-9759 and to pay by PTO Deposit
Account, MasterCard, Visa, or Discover. Information on the status of
pending orders may be obtained by calling (703) 308-9726 or 1 (800)
972-6382 (outside the Washington, DC Metro area), or via E-mail:

September 3, 1998                                          WESLEY H. GEWEHR
                                              Administrator for Information