Washington, D.C. – A new law allows applicants to file a single international design application to acquire global protection.
The U.S. Department of Commerce’s United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) recently announced a proposal to amend the rules of practice in patent cases to implement the provisions of Title I of the Patent Law Treaties Implementation Act of 2012 (also known as “PLTIA”). The law, which serves as the implementing legislation for both the Geneva Act of the Hague Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Industrial Designs (“the Hague Agreement”) and the Patent Law Treaty, will allow applicants to file a single international design application to acquire global protection.
When the Hague Agreement comes into effect in the United States, U.S. applicants will be able to file a single application for protection of an industrial design which will have effect in more than 40 territories.
“The ability for American industrial design creators to file a single, English-language application will allow small and medium sized businesses to easily and swiftly acquire design protection in multiple markets,” said Commissioner for Patents Margaret A. (Peggy) Focarino (pictured right).
The new provisions will standardize formal requirements for international design applications; establish the USPTO as an office through which international design applications may be filed; provide for substantive examination by the Office of international design applications that designate the United States; provide provisional rights for published international design applications that designate the United States; and set the patent term for design patents issuing from both national design applications and international design applications designating the United States at 15 years from the date of patent grant.
Practice Tip: Patent attorneys seeking further information about the proposed rules and instructions for submitting comments may look here: Federal Register Notice.