Washington - Today, a joint report published by the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) reports that both offices have been making efficient use of each other's work, which has led to an improvement in the quality of patents being granted. The report also states that patent attorneys could speed up the patenting process by amending patent applications at both offices when an exam report is issued by either one.
In 2010, the UKIPO and USPTO agreed to investigate ways to reduce patent processing backlogs in both countries. Through closer collaboration, both parties have improved the efficiency and quality of the patent examination process. This was achieved by enabling patent examiners from each office to make greater use of each other's work on commonly-filed patent applications. Each office also surveyed its examiners to assess their perceptions in using the shared work products, and the results of this survey inform the joint report.
John Alty, Chief Executive Officer of the UKIPO, said: "This important piece of work highlights that our examiners now routinely look at work from other Offices, and informs our continued efforts to maximize quality and efficiency savings via worksharing."
David Kappos, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO, said: "This work-sharing effort represents a major step forward in our ongoing cooperation with the UKIPO, and we are pleased with the results thus far. By making more efficient and effective use of each other's work, we can reduce the cost of doing business and help innovators move their products to market faster, with more predictability and certainty."
The UKIPO and USPTO will build on the joint report by continuing their worksharing efforts, and seeking to maximize the efficiency with which they use shared work reports.
A link to the report can be found on the websites for both the UKIPO and the USPTO. (USPTO at http://www.uspto.gov/patents/init_events/pph/pph_ukipo.jsp.)
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