Are you considering applying for your first patent or are you startup seeking to begin a strategy involving patents? The U.S. Patent & Trademark Office just launched a new program you want to know about.
The Council for Inclusive Innovation (CI2) First-Time Filer Expedited Examination Pilot Program was launched this month with the goal of expediting the process of obtaining a patent for first-time applicants that qualify as micro entities. Learn more about this program in the USPTO’s press release here and in our video below.
What is the Council for Inclusive Innovation (CI2) First-Time Filer Expedited Examination Pilot Program?
This new program was launched was launched to provide an expedited process for first-time filers. If you’re a first-time patent filer who would qualify as a micro entity this program could be used to expedite the process of receiving a first action from the patent office.
For those following Stake’s content, you’ll know that typically you’ll receive an office action from the Patent Office. This could be either what we call a “first action notice of allowance,” where your where your application just sails on through or, more commonly, it’ll include a rejection. Keep in mind, over 80 percent of applications that do eventually get approved as patents receive one of these.
What does the Council for Inclusive Innovation (CI2) First-Time Filer Expedited Examination Pilot Program do for startups seeking patents?
This program reduces the pendency time. Typically, when an inventor is looking to apply for a patent. I’ll tell them that we’ll put the application in and then we’ll talk to each other in about a year and a half. That’s usually how long it takes—about 16 to 18 months—for the patent office to get back to us with whether they’re going to immediately approve the case or whether they’re going to ask for more in a negotiation or back-and-forth.
The patent office is trying to find ways to bring more people—more inventors—into the fold of those who have patent protection and are able to leverage patents in the marketplace. Specifically, inventors that are from underrepresented groups or inventors that haven’t filed a patent application before. So the idea is, if you’re able to qualify as what’s called a micro entity, which I’d be happy to help you figure out if you can, and also it’s your first patent application, this program could expedite that process.
Thus, you won’t necessarily be waiting 16 to 18 months to hear back from the patent office the first time.
If you have more questions about this Council for Inclusive Innovation program or how to leverage it in applying for a patent for your startup feel free to get in touch! I’d be happy to talk to you more about it.