UNITED STATES POSTAL SERVICE INTERRUPTIONS
UNITED STATES POSTAL SERVICE INTERRUPTION AND EMERGENCY
The United States Postal Service (USPS) has informed the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) that as a result of the tragic event in New York City on September 11, 2001, all post offices in the borough of Manhattan are closed on September 12, 2001. These post offices will remain closed until further notice.
The USPTO is designating the interruption in the service of the USPS in the borough of Manhattan as a postal service interruption and an emergency within the meaning of 35 U.S.C. 21(a). Accordingly, the USPTO will consider the provisions of 37 C.F.R. 1.6(e) as now in effect. As soon as the USPTO receives further information from the USPS as to when postal services in the borough of Manhattan will be resumed, the USPTO will post the information on the USPTO website at www.uspto.gov and a final notice will be published in the Official Gazette regarding the postal interruption in New York City.
It would be appreciated if members of the public would bring to the USPTO's attention any other post office closings related to current events. Such information can be brought to the USPTO's attention by contacting Eugenia Jones by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone at 703-306-5586, or by contacting Carol Smith by e-mail at email@example.com or by telephone at 703-308-8910 (ext 149).
UNITED STATES POSTAL SERVICE INTERRUPTIONS RELATING TO
EXPRESS MAIL SERVICE
Where the USPS refuses to accept the deposit of mail for delivery by express mail.
In some cases, due to the recent emergency, certain post offices are refusing to accept the deposit of mail for delivery by Express Mail service. The USPTO is also designating this interruption in the Express Mail service of the USPS as a postal service interruption within the meaning of 35 U.S.C. 21(a) and 37 C.F.R. 1.6(e). In addition, if a party attempts to deposit correspondence for delivery to the USPTO with the USPS by Express Mail under 37 CFR 1.10 ("Express Mail Post Office to Addressee") and the USPS refuses to accept such correspondence, the party is advised to take the following action: mail the correspondence to the USPTO by registered or first class mail with a statement by the person who originally attempted to deposit the correspondence with the USPS by Express Mail. The statement must indicate the date on which the person attempted to deposit the correspondence with the USPS and that the USPS refused to accept the correspondence. The statement must be signed in accordance with 37 CFR 10.18. The correspondence should be mailed as set out in 37 CFR 1.1(a) and include the special box designation: BOX FILING DATE.
Where mail is put into an Express Mail "Drop Box" and given an incorrect "date in".
In some cases a person may use an Express Mail "drop box" without realizing that the local post office is not accepting Express Mail. In that situation, the provisions of 37 CFR 1.10(d) may apply. Usually 37 CFR 1.10(d) is invoked where correspondence is placed in an Express Mail "drop box" prior to the last pick up that is scheduled for the drop box for that day, but the USPS enters an incorrect "date-in" on the Express Mail mailing label, usually the next day's date. To invoke 37 CFR 1.10(d), however, a petition must be corroborated either by evidence from the USPS or by evidence that came into being after deposit and within one business day of the deposit of the correspondence in the Express Mail drop box (e.g., a copy of a log book indicating that the correspondence was deposited on the date in question). See MPEP 513 and TMEP 702.02(e).
Alternative Procedure Invoking "Extraordinary Circumstances"
If a party can demonstrate that due to extraordinary circumstances the above procedures could not be followed, it will be necessary to file a petition under 37 C.F.R. 1.183 (patent matter) or 2.146(a)(5) and 2.148 (trademark matter) to waive the requirements of 37 C.F.R. 1.10 to permit the USPTO to accord the correspondence a filing date as of the date that Express Mail deposit was attempted. Such a petition must be accompanied by a statement by the person who originally attempted to deposit the correspondence with the USPS by Express Mail, stating the date that the deposit was attempted and that the USPS refused to accept the correspondence, and be signed by such person subject to the conditions prescribed in 37 CFR 10.18.
Certificates of Mailing Under 37 CFR 1.8
Parties submitting correspondence to the USPTO are reminded that 37 CFR 1.8 (certificate of mailing or transmission practice) does not provide for according a filing date as of the date of deposit with the USPS to correspondence submitted under 37 CFR 1.8. Therefore, it would be inappropriate to file a petition under 37 CFR 1.183 or 2.146(a)(5) and 2.148 to waive the requirements of 37 CFR 1.8.
Date: 13 September 2001
Nicholas P. Godici
Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for
Intellectual Property and Acting Director of the
United States Patent and Trademark Office
NOTE: Effective June 24, 2002, 37 C.F.R. §1.10(a) has been amended. The Express Mail procedure provided in 37 C.F.R. §1.10 no longer applies to any of the following trademark documents:
- Trademark/Service Mark Application under §1 or §44 of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. §1051 or §1126
- Statement of Use under §1(d) of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. §1051(d)
- Amendment to Allege Use under §1(c) of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. §1051(c)
- Request for Extension of Time to File a Statement of Use under §1(d) of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. §1051(d)
- Affidavit or Declaration of Continued Use under Section 8 of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. §1058
- Renewal Request under Section 9 of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. §1059
- Combined Filing under Sections 8 and 9 of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. §§1058 and 1059
- Combined Affidavit or Declaration under Sections 8 and 15 of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. §§1058 and 1065
- Request to Change or Correct Address
If the documents listed above are filed by Express Mail, they will receive a filing date as of the date of receipt in the Office and not the date of deposit with the United States Postal Service. See notice at 67 Fed. Reg. 36099 (May 23, 2002) [PDF].