Patent applicants and holders will no longer have to send their documents across the country to Washington, D.C. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) recently announced plans to open regional USPTO offices in or around Dallas, Texas, Denver, Colorado, and Silicon Valley, California.
The announcement was made just ahead of the scheduled opening of the first USPTO satellite office in Detroit, Michigan. According to the USPTO, the new offices will allow the agency to work closely with entrepreneurs to process patent applications, reduce the backlog of unexamined patents, and speed up the overall process.
“By expanding our operation outside of the Washington metropolitan area for the first time in our agency’s 200-plus year history, we are taking unprecedented steps to recruit a diverse range of talented technical experts, creating new opportunities across the American workforce,” said David Kappos, Director of the USPTO. “These efforts, in conjunction with our ongoing implementation of the America Invents Act, are improving the effectiveness of our IP system, and breathing new life into the innovation ecosystem.”
The creation of the new offices was mandated under the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act of 2011 as part of a larger effort to modernize the U.S. patent system over the next three years. The four cities were selected as part of a lengthy process that examined a number of criteria, including geographical diversity, regional economic impact, ability to recruit and retain employees, and the ability to engage the intellectual property community.