USPTO Patent Application Initiatives - After Close of Prosecution

  After Final Consideration Pilot 2.0 (AFCP 2.0) Pre-Appeal Program General Interview Practice Quick Path Information Disclosure Statement (QPIDS) Ombudsman Program
Description AFCP 2.0 authorizes additional time for examiners to search and/or consider responses after final rejection. An avenue to request that a panel of examiners formally review the legal and factual basis of the rejections in their application prior to the filing of an appeal brief. The USPTO encourages examiners to take a proactive approach to examination by reaching out and engaging our stakeholders in an effort to resolve issues and shorten prosecution. QPIDS eliminates the requirement for filing an RCE with an IDS filed after payment of the issue fee in order for the IDS to be considered by the examiner. The Patents Ombudsman Program enhances the USPTO's ability to assist applicants or their representatives with issues that arise during patent application prosecution.
Program Start Date 05/2013 07/2005   05/2012 04/2010
Currently Active (accepting applications) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Petition / Request Request Request Request Submitted Via EFS-Web as e-petition Request
Surcharge / Fee No Notice of Appeal Fee No Yes - IDS fee $180 No
Claim Number Limit(s) No No N/A No N/A
Shortened Prosecution Time N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
Special Status N/A No N/A N/A N/A
Examination Support Document No No N/A No N/A
Shortened / Non- extendable Response Times No No N/A No N/A
Interview Required No No Yes No N/A
Continuation Applications & RCEs Eligible for Program N/A Yes Yes N/A Yes
Duration or Application Limit Expiration Extended to 9/30/19 Unlimited, no expiration No Expiration Extended to 9/30/18 Unlimited, no expiration
Status of Program Pilot Pilot Permanent Pilot Permanent