Friday, December 22, 2006

USPTO Announces Pilot "e-Office Action" Program

Effective December 16, 2006, the USPTO has announced a 6-month pilot program to provide a limited number of Private PAIR users with the option of receiving electronic notification of some outgoing correspondence related to their US patents and US national patent applications retrievable through Private PAIR instead of a paper mailing of the correspondence.

PCT Applications will not be included in this pilot.

Participants can designate up to 3 e-mail addresses to receive notifications associated with a corresponding Customer Number. Each e-mail notification will list all applications in which new outgoing correspondence was prepared for the corresponding file within the preceding 24 hours, and each notification will be entered into the corresponding application files. The correspondence should be available for downloading through Private PAIR within two business days of the date of the email notification.

The period for reply will begin tolling as of the day the correspondence becomes available for viewing.

If successful, the program will convert to full production around June 2007, at which point the program will be open to all users having a Customer Number and access to Private PAIR.

For further information, contact the Patent Electronic Business Center at (866) 217-9197 (toll-free), or send an e-mail to

See USPTO announcement here.

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