OED Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Questions Common Responses

How can I submit a request to OED?

A list of requests, requirements, fees, and routine processing times is provided at Routine Processing of Certain Documents Submitted to OED.

Account Management for Registered Practitioners:
How do I reset or recover my account?

Please use the User ID or Password Recovery tool at OEDIS-CI.
Alternatively, you may submit a written request with the practitioner’s signature to OED by fax, mail, or email

Evaluation of Qualifications:
The applicant would like to speak with an OED staff member to receive an unofficial technical evaluation prior to applying. Is this possible?

No, OED staff members do not provide a telephone evaluation of an applicant’s scientific and technical qualifications. You are encouraged to submit an application with required fees and supporting documentation. Your application will be reviewed and we will advise you whether you are eligible to be admitted to the registration examination.

Transcript:
May I send in an official original transcript with my application or is it required to come directly from the university?

The official transcript will be accepted from an applicant. A diploma, copy of the diploma, or copy of the transcript will not be accepted. The college or university transcript must be official and include the university stamp or seal.

Similar Degree:
If my degree is similar to the degrees listed in Category A, may I assume my application will be processed as a Category A application?

No. If your degree is not listed EXACTLY as shown in the Category A list, you must qualify under one of the Category B options or Category C and submit the required documentation.

Other Degrees:
I have a degree that is not relevant to the application. Is it a requirement that I submit the transcript?

Applicants must submit transcripts that support the requirements for registration as shown in the GRB. You are not required to submit transcripts that are not relied upon to establish scientific and technical qualifications. However, it may be beneficial if you submit it.

Questions 14-21 of form PTO-158:
I have a situation that occurred several years ago where I was charged and later the charge were dropped. What should I do?

Disclose the information. Provide honest and complete answers to all questions on the second page of the application form. If the answer is "yes", then mark the "yes" box, and provide the appropriate explanation and supporting documentation. For more information please see GRB at pages 13-14.

Applicant Address:
Will the address I provided with my application be made public?

Pursuant to 37 C.F.R. § 11.8(a), OED publishes the names and application addresses of individuals seeking registration or recognition to practice before the USPTO to solicit information concerning the individual's good moral character and reputation. The address used is the address of record at the time the applicant passes the exam or a waiver or reciprocity application is approved. If you would like to have a different address published you may submit a Change of Address request prior to the publication. Once the names and addresses are published in the Official Gazette they cannot be changed.

Application Status:
Can I call OED regarding the status of my application?

Please do not call OED regarding the status of an application unless applicant has not received a response four weeks after submitting an application or supplemental papers. However, an applicant who has not received a response from OED after four weeks should contact OED as soon as possible thereafter. An applicant should not expect to receive any extension to the ninety-day window for scheduling the examination, particularly in a situation where the applicant delayed reporting the lack of receipt after four weeks.

Application Receipt:
Did OED receive my application?

Applicants who wish to receive an acknowledgment of the receipt of an application are required to include with the application a self-addressed stamped postcard to be used for the application receipt. OED will stamp the receipt date on the postcard and place it in the outgoing mail.

Incomplete Notice:
May I speak with someone about the incomplete notice I received?

OED staff cannot evaluate applications on the phone. If you receive an incomplete notice, and desire further consideration of your scientific and technical qualifications, please submit a written request for reconsideration to OED or you may submit a petition to the Director of OED. Any petition for review must include the $400 fee.

 

Change of Address for Applicants:
I received a notice of admission to the exam and have moved. I need to change my address. What should I do?

You must notify OED in writing by mail, e-mail, or fax. The change should be signed by the applicant and clearly indicate that the request is for an applicant who is taking the exam. You must also notify Prometric at the phone number and address shown on the admission letter.

 

Reapplying:
If I previously applied, do I need to send in everything again?

An applicant reapplying after a notice of failure or no-show must submit the following:

  • A completed Application for Registration Form (PTO-158);
  • $100.00 non-refundable application fee;
  • $200.00 or $450.00 registration examination fee;
  • All other documentation necessary to update the application, such as, but not limited to, responses to questions 14-21 if NOT previously submitted to OED.
Any documentation or transcript previously submitted to OED after 2006 need not be resubmitted.

Examination Administered at USPTO:
When is the USPTO-administered Registration Examination given?

Please visit the Registration examination page for more information.

Exam Format:
Is the exam multiple-choice?

The examination includes 100 multiple-choice questions, of which 90 are scored. To pass the examination, an applicant must correctly answer seventy percent of the scored questions (63 of 90). Each scored question has been psychometrically analyzed to ensure the question provides a useful assessment of an applicant’s legal qualifications. Additional information pertaining to the exam style can be found on page 20 of the GRB

Exam Test Center:
Where are the exam test sites?

Prometric, the commercial provider that delivers the USPTO registration examination, has test centers throughout the United States to administer the computer-based examination. After you receive your admission letter from the USPTO, please contact Prometric as soon as possible to schedule exam at www.prometric.com or call the Toll Free Number: 800-479-6369.

Exam at Prometric:
The applicant arrives at the Prometric testing center late. Is it necessary to submit another application?

If the applicant has time remaining on their examination window, they may call the USPTO to request their eligibility to be reset with Prometric. An applicant who fails to take a scheduled examination will be subject to Prometric rescheduling and fee policies.
If there is no time remaining on the eligibility window, the applicant may thereafter reapply for admission.  The fees upon reapplication include the $100.00 application fee and the $200.00 examination fee.

Exam Extension:
Can an applicant get an extension of the exam eligibility window?

Extension of time to take the examination should not be expected even if, as the end of the exam window approaches, the applicant is having difficulty scheduling an examination or is unprepared to take the examination. You are strongly urged to schedule your appointment promptly, because some test sites fill quickly. Availability of a particular site on a particular day is not guaranteed. Waiting until the last few weeks to schedule an appointment may necessitate that you arrange to take the examination at a site and on a date differing from your preference. For any other reason, the applicant must submit a written request with an original signature along with documentation supporting the request.

Exam Results:
After the applicant takes the computerized exam, how long does it take to receive the results?

The unofficial results are displayed on the computer terminal and printed at the Prometric’s Test Center at the end of the examination.
An applicant taking the examination over two days (due to a reasonable accommodations granted) will NOT receive unofficial results at the Prometric Test Center.
Official Results are typically mailed to the address of record within 5 business days.

Review Session:
I took the exam and did not pass. I would like to review the questions I missed. What is the process for reviewing the questions I missed on the exam?

You may schedule an appointment to review the questions and answers you answered incorrectly.  Any such review session must occur within 60 days of the mailing date of the notice of results.
You may schedule a computer-based review session with Prometric. The cost of a Prometric review session is currently $195.00.
Alternatively, you may schedule a paper-based review session at the Office of Enrollment and Discipline in Alexandria, Virginia. The cost of a USPTO review session is currently $450.00

Fees Deferred:
Can an applicant submit the $100.00 application fee without the $200.00 examination fee until OED notifies the applicant of being qualified to take the exam?

No, applicants must submit both fees at the time the application is submitted to OED. The application will be deemed incomplete without the fee and OED will not process the application unless all fees are received with the completed application.

Fees Submission:
May an applicant submit one check for the application and examination fees or must the applicant submit 2 checks?

Yes, the applicant may choose to submit one or two checks.

Refunds:
An applicant would like a refund of the fees. Is this possible?

The $200.00 or $450.00 registration examination fee will be refunded to a disapproved applicant in due course; the $100.00 application fee is not refundable. The fees from one application will not be deferred to another application.

Filing Deadline:
Is there a filing deadline for the exam?

No, applications for the computer-based registration examination administered by Prometric are accepted every day in the Office of Enrollment and Discipline. However, the USPTO administered exam (paper-based) is given once a year at the USPTO Headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia. The deadline for the USPTO administered exam is published each fiscal year on OED's website.

General Requirements Bulletin (GRB):
Is the GRB available on-line?

Yes, at the following link:  General Requirement Bulletin.
 

Petition on Decision Status:
What is the status of the petition on the decision an applicant filed?

OED can confirm that an applicant’s petition and the $400.00 fee was received; however, OED cannot discuss its merits.

Certificate for Registered Attorneys & Agents:
How long does it take for an applicant to receive a certificate after passing the exam?

It takes approximately 3 months for delivery in most cases.
Submitting Requests:
 
E-mail:   OED@uspto.gov
Fax:        (571) 273-0074 
Mail:      Mail Stop OED, United States Patent and Trademark Office
               P.O. Box 1450, Alexandria, VA 22313-1450

Office Hours:
What are the OED office hours?

The OED office hours are from 8:30am to 5:00pm (Monday – Friday).