PTO Moving to E-Patents
March 21, 2023
Starting April 18, 2023, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) will shift to electronic patent issuance for utility, design, plant, and reissue patents. Official patent copies will be in PDF format and available on the grant day. The new e-patents will mirror the appearance of the currently produced bound patent grant and use a digital seal and signature to certify and validate the patent’s authenticity. Printed “ceremonial” patent copies, along with presentation and certified paper copies, can still be requested for a nominal fee.
This change will significantly reduce the time between issue fee payment and patent grant, shortening the window from three weeks to 2-3 business days. To ensure priority, continuation and divisional applications should be filed before or on the issue fee payment due date to ensure priority.
More information can be found on the PTO’s e-Grants and news updates website.