PKI Deadline Postponed

Important update: The deadlines related to authentication change and migration for EFS-Web and Private PAIR are being extended due to technical issues. We will announce the new deadlines when they are determined. Until then, you can still authenticate using either accounts or PKI certificates. 

Patent Electronic Business Center

The Patent Electronic Business Center (EBC) assists customers with the various Patent Electronic Systems which include filing their electronic patent application submissions via the Electronic Filing System (EFS-Web) and with the review of patent applications in Public and Private PAIR, as well as supporting customers while Searching the Patent and Application Full-Text Image DatabasesThe Electronic Business Center proudly serves the IP community with extended daytime and after-hours technical assistance on a wide range of support topics related to these systems.

Check the System Alerts pages for announcements of all planned and unplanned outages of all USPTO Online Business systems.  See also EFS-Web Announcements  and PAIR Announcements.
Patent Electronic Business Center Contact Info

1-866-217-9197 (toll-free)
571-272-4100 (local)

6:00 a.m. to 12:00 midnight, Eastern Time, Monday through Friday

Fax:  571-273-0177
Postal Address: Mail Stop EBC
Commissioner for Patents
PO Box 1450
Alexandria, VA 22313-1450

New to Patents?

Please first review the New Users section and Frequently Asked Questions for introductory information about the various USPTO Patent Electronic Systems and tools.

How We Can Help

The EBC offers in-depth technical support to external users of the USPTO's Patent Electronic Systems comprised of EFS-WEB, Public and Private PAIR, and Patent Center.  We offer one-on-one support, online electronic filing information, instructional material, support and is available to assist users through one-on-one support during its normal business hours. The EBC also serves as a liaison in directing customers to other USPTO organizations that can address their specialized business issues and needs.

If you are having a problem with a system on the website, you are experiencing a problem after regular USPTO business hours, or you are not even exactly sure what is wrong, our staff of highly trained customer support specialists can help you identify the root problem, assist you, direct you to the appropriate call center, or escalate your issue to a specialized group as needed.  We are here to help!

Major Support Areas

  • Submitting your Patent Application via EFS-Web
  • Viewing Application information in Public and Private PAIR
  • Searching for Patents in AppFT and PatFT
  • Patent Electronic System Verification Form and Customer Number Issues and Assistance
  • account authentication for Private PAIR and EFS-WEB including Web Browser Problems
  • Technical Problems or Errors with your Patent Application
  • PDX/DAS Registration Inquires and Issues
  • Technical Problems with Biotech Tools such as PatentIn and Checker 

Becoming a Registered Account User

Customer Number and a registered account are required to take full advantage of the Patent Electronic Systems. The EBC also assists customers in managing customer number associations with addresses and filed applications.

Creating and Managing a Digital Certificate

  • Digital Certificate Management Important update: The deadline relating to turning off the Digital Certificate Management tool used in the management of PKI is extended until further notice.
  • Use this site to create and recover your digital certificate, change your password, setup self-recovery codes and update your registered email address.

Related Forms

  • Patent Electronic  Verification Form [PDF, 63kB]   Instructions  [73kB PDF Document]  
    This form is used to register your account which will provide you the means to gain secure access to your application information as well as public domain info.
  • Customer Number Request form  [fillable PDF, 208kB]  
    This form is used to request a customer number. 
    New - Customer Number requests can now be submitted online via Private PAIR where you will immediately receive your new number - More info
  • Request for Customer Number Data Change [filllable PDF, 180kB]  
    This form is used to request changes in current customer number information.
  • Customer Number Upload Spreadsheet  [MS Excel, 241kB]  
    This is a spreadsheet template used to associate your customer number with your applications. 
    One can additionally file a change of correspondence address form PTO/AIA/122 or PTO/SB122 to an individual application to change the correspondence address to a customer number. 
    New – Correspondence and Maintenance Fee address changes can now be submitted online via Private PAIR  - More info
    *Address changes made via Private PAIR are only available to registered practitioners who have been given power of attorney in the application.  
  • Request to Update a PCT Application with a Customer Number form [MS Word, 34.5kB] 
    This allows you to  associate a PCT application in the International phase with a Customer Number for purposes of viewing the PCT application in Private PAIR.

Additional Info


  • Patent Electronic System Access Document serves as a source document for additional information on the components for accessing the patent electronic system.
  • PKI Subscriber Agreement  [PDF, 111kB] (Feb2013) This is a legal document describing the agreement between the United States Patent & Trademark Office and digital certificate holder regarding the use of a USPTO digital certificate
  • Patent Electronic System Subscriber Agreement (Nov2018) for Users for EFS-Web, PAIR, and Patent Center  
  • Export Control 
    This explains the strict export license requirements on USPTO Electronic Business Center software prior to export from the U.S.