Office of Enrollment and Discipline

Will Covey
Deputy General Counsel and Director for the Office of Enrollment and Discipline

About the Office of Enrollment and Discipline

The Office of Enrollment and Discipline (OED) is responsible for registering attorneys and agents to practice before the USPTO and for developing and administering the registration examination. Only registered patent attorneys and agents, as well as individuals granted limited recognition are permitted to practice before the USPTO in patent matters. Additionally, the OED investigates allegations of misconduct by practitioners and administers and oversees the USPTO Law School Clinic Certification and Patent Pro Bono programs.

The Office of Enrollment and Discipline is Now Accepting Applications for the Newly Created Design Patent Practitioner Bar

On November 16, 2023, the United Stated Patent and Trademark Office published a Final Rule titled “Representation of Others in Design Patent Matters Before the United States Patent and Trademark Office,” implementing the creation of a design patent practitioner bar. (88 FR 78644). The Final Rule established scientific and technical criteria for design patent practitioner applicants. Applicants should have a bachelor's, master's, or doctorate of philosophy degree in any of the following areas from an accredited college or university: industrial design, product design, architecture, applied arts, graphic design, fine/studio arts, or art teacher education, or a degree equivalent to one of the listed degrees.

Upon meeting the scientific and technical criteria, design patent practitioner applicants must take and pass the current registration examination, and pass a moral character evaluation. Upon registration, design patent practitioners may practice in design patent matters only.

The design patent practitioner bar does not impact the ability of those already registered, and does not impact the ability of applicants who meet the current criteria, to practice in any patent matters, including design patent matters.

Design patent practitioner applicants may apply as of January 2, 2024. Additional information can be found on the Design Patent Practitioner Flyer.  

Patent and trademark practitioners

Current patent and trademark practitioners, as well as those interested in becoming a practitioner may visit the Patent and trademark practitioners page for information on ethics rules, General Requirements Bulletin, exam information, and more.  Applicants and inventors may also find contact information and public disciplinary decisions regarding practitioners.

Patent and trademark practitioners

All attorneys and agents practicing before the USPTO in trademark or patent matters are subject to the USPTO Rules of Professional Conduct set forth in 37 C.F.R. §§ 11.101 et. seq. and disciplinary jurisdiction under 37 C.F.R. § 11.19(a). Additionally, unauthorized individuals who represent others before the USPTO are subject to the disciplinary jurisdiction of the USPTO. See 37 C.F.R. §11.19(a).

Contact OED

Phone: 571-272-4097    
Fax: 571-273-0074    

Mailing Address:    
Mail Stop OED    
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office    
PO Box 1450    
Alexandria, VA 22313-1450

Schedule appointments    
Visit the OED enrollment appointment request page to schedule a virtual or in-person appointment with an enrollment specialist.

Speaking engagements    
Access information regarding past OED speaking engagements and presentations.

OED Speaking Engagements