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|Top of Notices (411) December 31, 2013||US PATENT AND TRADEMARK OFFICE||Print This Notice 1397 CNOG 2939|
|PCT, International Applications||Referenced Items (411, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 423, 424, 425, 426, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432)|
(411) USPTO to Cease Supplying Paper Copies of Cited WO Document References in International Applications In support of its 21st Century Strategic Plan goal of increased patent e-Government, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office or USPTO) ceased the mailing of cited U.S. patents and U.S. patent application publications in national Office actions and in International Search Reports (ISRs), Written Opinions (WOs) and International Preliminary Examination Reports (IPERs) prepared by the Office in international applications under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) in June 2004 and July 2007, respectively. In continued support of that goal, the USPTO will cease the mailing of copies of published PCT applications (WO document citations) in ISRs, WOs and IPERs prepared by the Office. The Office estimates a savings of approximately $125,000 annually through this initiative and expects an increase in the timely issuance of ISRs and WOs in international applications where the Office acts as the International Searching Authority. Prior to June 2004, the USPTO provided paper copies of all cited references with Office actions in national patent applications and with ISRs, WOs and IPERs prepared by the Office in international applications under the PCT. In June 2004, the USPTO began the phase-in of its E-Patent Reference program by: (1) providing downloading capability of the U.S. patents and U.S. patent application publications cited in Office actions via the E-Patent Reference feature of the Office's Patent Application Information Retrieval (PAIR) system; and (2) ceasing to mail paper copies of cited U.S. patents and U.S. patent application publications with office actions. A otice announcing these changes was published in the Official Gazette. See USPTO to Provide Electronic Access to Cited U.S. Patent References with Office Actions and Cease Supplying Paper Copies, 1282 Off. Gaz. Pat. Office 109 (May 18, 2004). The same notice also announced an exception, with respect to item (2), for citations made during the international stage of an international application under the PCT. In July 2007, the USPTO removed the exception for citations made during the international stage of an international application under the PCT. A notice announcing this change was published in the Official Gazette. See USPTO to Cease Supplying Paper Copies of Cited U.S. Patent References in International Applications (July 03, 2007). Effective upon publication of this notice in the Official Gazette, the USPTO will no longer mail paper copies of published PCT applications (WO document citations) in international applications. Applicants may obtain copies of cited published PCT applications from the Internet Web site of the World Intellectual Property Organization (http://patentscope.wipo.int) and/or from commercial sources. The USPTO will continue the practice of supplying paper copies of other foreign patent documents and non-patent literature with International Search Reports, Written Opinions and International Preliminary Examination Reports prepared by the Office. Questions about this notice may be directed to Michael Neas, Supervisory PCT Legal Examiner, Office of PCT Legal Administration (OPCTLA), at email@example.com. October 2, 2013 MARGARET A. FOCARINO Commissioner for Patents United States Patent and Trademark Office [1395 OG 335]