EFS-Web Announcements

EFS-Web logoAll customers are encouraged to register so they are ready to use the full features of EFS-Web for Registered eFilers and Private PAIR.

For questions/comments or further assistance on any announcement below, please send an e-mail to ebc@uspto.gov or call the Patent Electronic Business Center at 1-866-217-9197 (toll-free) or 571-272-4100 from 6 a.m. to 12 Midnight Eastern Time, Monday - Friday.

EFS-Web Availability:
 
 
Check System Status Page for Current Status

 

New Applications:24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year
Follow-on Submissions:23 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year . Unavailable daily from 4:30AM - 5:30AM ET
Fee Payment (Stored Payment Method via USPTO Payment Page (Financial Manager)):23.5 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Unavailable daily from 12:01AM to 12:30AM

Advisory (02OCTOBER2020) NOA Update

Notices of Allowance (NOAs) with mail date of October 2, 2020 may specify an incorrect issue fee amount. We are taking corrective action by mailing a Corrected Notice of Allowance in such cases. Notices of Allowance mailed on or after October 2, 2020 should specify the increased issue fee amount according to the USPTO fee schedule effective October 2. If you received an NOA specifying an incorrect issue fee amount, please wait to pay the issue fee until you have received a Corrected Notice of Allowance resetting the fee due, which will also reset the time period for paying the

Advisory (01OCTOBER2020) NOA Update

This update applies to applicants who received a Notice of Allowance that has a mail date between September 9, 2020 and September 15, 2020, and that specifies an incorrect issue fee amount. Corrected Notices of Allowance are now available in Private PAIR and Patent Center, and includes an attachment providing additional explanations and instructions as to how to properly respond.

Advisory (15SEPTEMBER2020) General Advisory on Issue Fee Amounts

Notices of Allowance mailed during the period of September 9-15, 2020 may specify an incorrect issue fee amount.

Effective October 2, 2020, many patent fees, including the issue fee, will increase.  Currently the issue fees are $1,000.00, $500.00 and $250.00 for undiscounted, small entity and micro entity, respectively for Utility and Reissue applications. For current issue fee amounts in other types of applications, please see the Current Fee Schedule.  The issue fees will increase to $1,200.00, $600.00 and $300.00 for undiscounted, small entity and micro entity, respectively. For increased issue fee amounts in other types of applications, effective on October 2, please see fee schedule-effective October 2. Only Notices of Allowance mailed on or after October 2, 2020 should specify the increased issue fee amount.  However, due to a technical problem, most Notices of Allowance mailed between September 9, 2020 and September 15, 2020 specify the increased issue fee amount.  The Office is taking corrective action by mailing a Corrected Notice of Allowance (NOA) in all such cases, where the issue fee has not yet been paid. 

For applicants who received a Notice of Allowance that has a mail date between September 9, 2020 and September 15, 2020, and that specifies an incorrect issue fee amount, please wait to pay the issue fee until you have received a Corrected Notice of Allowance resetting the fee due, which will also reset the time period for paying the fee. The issue fee amount specified on the Corrected Notice of Allowance will be the issue fee amount due even if the issue fee is paid on or after October 2, 2020 – the date the increased issue fee amount takes effect. 

Applicants should verify that any Notice of Allowance received by the applicant has a mail date between September 9, 2020 and September 15, 2020, and that the Notice of Allowance specifies an incorrect issue fee amount, before opting to wait for a Corrected Notice of Allowance.  A Corrected Notice of Allowance will only be mailed for cases that received a Notice of Allowance specifying an incorrect fee amount during the period of September 9 to September 15. If you do not receive a Corrected Notice of Allowance to replace the incorrect Notice of Allowance by October 2, 2020 and the issue fee has not yet been paid, then please contact the Application Assistance Unit.

If you have already paid the issue fee in response to a Notice of Allowance that has a mail date between September 9, 2020 and September 15, 2020, and that specifies an incorrect amount, or if you have paid the issue fee and then received a Corrected Notice of Allowance, the USPTO will follow up with further guidance. 

Notices of Allowance for international design applications that have mail dates between September 9, 2020 and September 15, 2020 specify the correct issue fee amount and were not affected by this problem. Applicants may respond to the Notice of Allowance as specified therein. 

For questions regarding Issue Fee amount calculation, please contact the Application Assistance Unit at 888-786-0101 or HelpAAU@uspto.gov .

For assistance with PAIR or EFS-Web, please contact the Patent EBC at 1-866-217-9197or ebc@uspto.gov

Advisory (11JUNE2020): Preserving Image Fidelity:

As a best practice, the USPTO encourages applicants to review all submissions in Private PAIR to confirm that submissions are complete and document image quality is acceptable. Drawings available in Private PAIR under the Image File Wrapper tab can serve as a preview of the image quality as it would publish on the patent grant. It is important to follow the recommendations below to preserve image fidelity.

When creating PDF documents:

  1. For best resolution, PDFs should be set to a resolution of 300 DPI. This information can be found in your PDF application settings
  2. Do not use any background colors, e.g., grayscale
  3. EFS-Web and Patent Center requires that images with multiple layers be “flattened” before embedding them into the PDF document. Do not include any layers, annotations, comments etc.
  4. Adjust document color settings to RBG rather than CMYK color space which can all be found in your PDF application settings
  5. Avoid using document compression, such as JBIG2 compression, or “smallest file size” PDF settings.

When creating Drawings – only black and white line drawings (Document Code: DRW):

  1. Use only black and white lined drawings only; submitting any grayscale drawings may cause the image to blur or become distorted.
  2. Applicants should adjust the color value of black in the image to #000000 and the color value of white to #FFFFFF

If you have questions, please contact the Patent Electronic Business Center (EBC) at (866) 217-9197 during their operating hours of 6 a.m. to midnight ET, Monday - Friday, or email ebc@uspto.gov.

Advisory (15MAY2020): 15 series application numbers

Beginning on May 12, 2020, some new nonprovisional Utility applications filed via EFS-Web and Patent Center were assigned 15 series application numbers (specifically, 15/930001 through 15/932000), rather than a 16 series application number.  The application numbers were not previously used for other applications.  These application numbers, therefore, are valid application numbers that were correctly assigned by the USPTO.  The sequence of application numbers assigned is not always in date order and has no impact on the processing and examination of applications.

Advisory (14MAY2020): COVID-19 Prioritized Examination Pilot Program for small and micro entities

Patent applicants who qualify for the COVID-19 Prioritized Examination Pilot Program may now submit a request via EFS-Web or Patent Center (Beta). 

How to file:

•    Fill out Pilot Program Form PTO/SB/450.
•    Save the form and upload it via our patent electronic filing system, EFS-Web or Patent Center (Beta).
•    For Original Utility (Track One)—Prioritized Examination, select “New application/proceeding Utility > Track I Prioritized Examination - Nonprovisional Application under 35 USC 111(a)” as the EFS-Web submission type. Do not choose “Utility > Nonprovisional Application under 35 USC 111(a)“ or “Utility > Accelerated Exam.”
•    For Request for Continued Examination—Prioritized Examination, select “Existing application/patent/proceeding” > “Documents/Fees for an existing application/proceeding” as the EFS-Web submission type.
•    When uploading your PTO/SB/450 form, select document description “COVID-19 Prioritized Examination Request” (found under both the “Track I - Prioritized Examination” and “Pilot Programs” categories) on the EFS-Web Attach Documents screen and Patent Center Upload Documents screen to ensure processing.


For more information on the new program, please visit the COVID-19 Prioritized Examination Pilot Program webpage,  Federal Register notice, or  USPTO press release.

For questions about Track One prioritized examination, please visit the Track One resource page.

For questions about EFS-Web or Public and Private PAIR system, please contact the Patent Electronic Business Center at 866-217-9197.

For questions regarding the COVID-19 Prioritized Examination Pilot Program Federal Register notice, please contact Robert Clarke at 571-272-7735 or via email at covid19PrioritizedExamPilot@uspto.gov.

 

Advisory (20APRIL2020): Patent Center Beta is now available for all users. Patent Center is a new tool for electronic filing and management of patent applications.

Patent Center and DOCX filing features:

  • Single unified interface for patent applicants

  • Use of existing USPTO.gov accounts and sponsorships

  • Submission of the specification, claims and abstract in a single DOCX document without the need to manually separate sections

  • Elimination of user conversion from DOCX into a PDF for filing

  • Security of documents through automatic DOCX metadata detection and scrubbing

  • Practice filing in DOCX format in Patent Center Training mode

Electronic filing provides multiple benefits, such as immediate routing of documents to USPTO internal systems, an Acknowledgement Receipt to show that the USPTO has received the submission, reduced manual processing and paper waste, elimination of wait times associated with conventional mailing, and the ability to save your submission package to complete, review, or submit at a later time.

We encourage you to use Patent Center Beta and provide feedback. Your feedback is valuable to us and your participation shapes the future of our systems at the USPTO. To provide feedback on Patent Center Beta, please visit the eMod IdeaScale. Additionally, you can send questions and comments to eMod@uspto.gov.

More information about Patent Center Beta is available on the Patent Center Information page.

To learn more, please register for an upcoming  Patent Center Beta and DOCX training session.

For technical questions or assistance, please contact the Patent Electronic Business Center at ebc@uspto.gov or 866-217-9197.


Advisory (16APRIL2020): Private PAIR Admin Features

We encourage customers to use the online resources available in Private PAIR for creating new Customer Numbers, updating existing Customer Numbers, uploading Customer Number spreadsheets and updating PCT applications with a Customer Number.

These online features are found within the PAIR Administration menu in Private PAIR.

  • Create New Customer Number
  • View Customer Number Details
  • Update Application Address
    • Change the correspondence and/or maintenance fee of up to 20 applications simultaneously
    • Power of attorney is required to update the address.
    • Independent Inventors who need to update the correspondence address of an application will need to file Correspondence Address Form AIA/122 or SB/122 via EFS-Web.
    • Independent Inventors who need to update the maintenance fee address of an application will need to file Fee Address Indication Form AIA/47 or SB/47 via EFS-Web or fax to 571-273-6500
  • Associate a PCT application in the International phase with a Customer Number for purposes of viewing the PCT application in Private PAIR by downloading and completing the Request to Update a PCT Application with a Customer Number PTO-2248 and submit via fax at 571-273-0177

If you have questions, please contact Patent Electronic Business Center at ebc@uspt.gov or 866-217-9197.

Advisory (23MARCH2020): Receiving office communications electronically

The USPTO continues to encourage customers to take advantage of the efficiency and convenience of our online business systems. The USPTO currently offers electronic notification of Office communications, including Office actions to those participating in the e-Office Action program. The USPTO is encouraging registered users of the USPTO’s Patent Electronic Systems who are not currently participating in the e-Office Action program to log into Private PAIR to update their Customer Number details to receive electronic notifications of Office communications (e.g., by selecting the option “Receive Correspondence Notification via e-Mail” on the Edit Customer Details screen).

For more information, please visit the e-Office Action program webpage on the USPTO website.

If you have questions about the e-Office Action program or on how to become a registered user, please contact the Patent Electronic Business Center (EBC) at ebc@uspto.gov or 866-217-9197.

Advisory (16JUL2019): Verified USPTO.gov account required for EFS-Web and Private PAIR

Practitioners and independent inventors need a verified USPTO.gov account to access EFS-Web for registered eFilers and Private PAIR. Support staff working on behalf of a practitioner needs to be sponsored to obtain access.

New customers, or customers who did not migrate by the migration deadline, can obtain a verified USPTO.gov account using the new verification process. See the Authentication Change webpage for more information.

If you have questions, please contact the Patent Electronic Business Center (EBC) at ebc@uspto.gov or 866-217-9197.

 

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