USPTO Patent Allowance Rates Drop to Record Low

Speaking at the BIO Intellectual Property Counsel Committee’s Fall Conference and Committee Meeting, the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) Commissioner for Patents John J. Doll commented on the trends in patent application allowance. According to presented data, patent allowance rates continue their steady drop. Final patent allowance rates for 2007 dipped below 45 percent – the lowest in United States history.

The USPTO states that record lows reflect the tighter measures for reviewing and accepting applications, resulting in an increase in the overall quality of accepted patents. As recently as 2000, patent acceptance rates hovered over 70 percent. Since that time, the USPTO has focused its efforts to lower the rates. However, some remain convinced that lower acceptance rates contribute to increasing backlogs in the USPTO as Requests for Continued Examination (RCE) filings continue to grow.

“It is important that everyone in the industry, from inventors to patent counsel, is aware of the recent statistics relating to patent application acceptance,” says Boyle Fredrickson President, Atty. Andrew McConnell. “The USPTO has clearly made a conscious effort to put in place a stricter review process. It now becomes imperative that applications are thoroughly researched and properly filed. It is also important for all parties to maintain realistic expectations in view of the current downward trend in USPTO allowance rates.”


About Boyle Fredrickson

Established in 1999, Boyle Fredrickson has grown to become Wisconsin’s largest intellectual property law firm. You’ve got ideas, we protect them.

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