Hearings open to the public will be posted in advance on the PTAB Hearing Schedules page. The posting will contain the time, date, hearing room, and proceeding number set for a particular hearing session. Due to last minute cancellations or no shows, there are no guarantees that a hearing on a particular proceeding will occur, although it may be posted.
Hearing Room Admittance
The PTAB shares four hearing rooms with the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB). These rooms are located in the Madison Building, East Wing. Hearing rooms are designated as "A" through "D". Spaces are reserved in each hearing room for party representatives. The remaining spaces in each room may be made available to the public. The maximum number of publicly available spaces that may be available in each hearing room is as follows:
Hearing Room A: 55 spaces
Hearing Room B: 8 spaces
Hearing Room C: 10 spaces
Hearing Room D: 8 spaces
The PTAB and TTAB reserve the right to restrict public attendance levels at any hearing.
Members of the public should plan to arrive thirty minutes before the scheduled start of the hearing session. Upon arrival, visitors will come to the lobby level, Madison East Guard Desk to request a hearing badge for the specific hearing room, e.g., A, B, C, or D. Visitors will be screened and required to surrender a picture ID in exchange for a hearing badge.
The Guard Desk will only issue a given number of hearing badges for each hearing room on a first come, first served basis. No advance requests for attendance by the public will be permitted.
Fifteen minutes before the start of a hearing session a hearing usher will escort the public attendees with badges to the hearing rooms. Upon exiting the building, hearing badges are turned in at the Guard Desk in exchange for the attendee's picture ID.
Patent practitioners and agents should counsel their clients about Board visitation procedures, e.g. the need to bring photo identification, and appropriate decorum. Please plan to allow sufficient time for security screening so that you can timely appear for oral argument.
All attendees should review the attendance procedures and hearing room protocol provided here prior to attending a hearing.
- Forms of Identification Required to Access USPTO Buildings (effective August 4, 2014)
- Hearing Room Protocol/Decorum
- Hearing Schedules
- ... more Hearings guidance