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Helpful Hints, Notices Referenced Items (392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398)
(397)            Notification Regarding Voice Response System
                          For Patent Maintenance Fees

   All patent owners are notified of a new, automated voice response
system for patent maintenance fees. The voice response system may be
accessed 24 hours a day, seven days a week on (703) 308-5036 and (703)

   The voice response system provides access to general patent maintenance
fee information, including, but not limited to:

   . The fee schedule for maintenance fees, including surcharges.
   . How to pay maintenance fees (e.g., check, money order, deposit
account, etc.).
   . Where to pay maintenance fees.
   . General information on expired patents (e.g., petitions must be
filed within 24 months after the expiration date).
   . How to access maintenance fee information through the official PTO
Web site.

   The voice response system provides access to maintenance fee
information on specific patents, including:

   . The current entity status (e.g., small entity).
   . The filing date.
   . The issue date.
   . Information on payments in the maintenance fee history file
excluding refunds.

   A diagram of the voice response system follows.

   Questions regarding patent maintenance fees should be directed to the
Maintenance Fee Branch at (703) 308-5068 or (703) 308-5069. Questions or
comments concerning this notice should be forwarded to Matthew Lee,
Office of Finance, by telephone at (703) 305-8051, by facsimile at (703)
305-8007, or by e-mail at

March 12, 1999                                           Q. TODD DICKINSON
                                                Acting Assistant Secretary
                                                           of Commerce and
                                                       Acting Commissioner
                                                 of Patents and Trademarks

                                 [1221 OG 40]