Tuesday, November 23, 2004

WHAT'S IN *YOUR* DOCKET? IP Law & Business recently conducted a Technology Survey , where the 50 largest patent firms, ranked by number of registered patent attorneys, were asked what docketing software and annuity software they use.

Most firms use both: docketing software to manage prosecution of pending patents and trademarks, and annuity software to manage payments of maintenance fees and taxes on existing patents. Docketing and annuity software developed along separate lines, and historically firms used separate software programs to manage each task. Recently, however, most of the major vendors have started offering linked systems, and many firms are slowly starting to adopt them.

The survey also asked firms what kinds of tools--Web sites, databases, and the like--they use when conducting prior art searches for patent and trademark applications. 38 firms responded to the survey.

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