USPTO Webinar Scheduled Today, FAQ Published

As a reminder, the USPTO will conduct a training session from 10 am – noon, in the North Auditorium of the Madison Building at the Alexandria Campus of the USPTO. The training session will be directed to the new Patent Review Processing System (PRPS) of the Patent Trial & Appeal Board (PTAB). The session will be broadcast via WebEx and available for replay thereafter. Information to connect to the training session via WebEx is provided below.

WebEx participants will be able to submit questions through the WebEx chat session.

The USPTO has also issued a brief FAQ on the PRPS system:

1. When will PRSP be active?

It will be active at 12:01 am on Sunday morning of September 16, 2012. The Board will have personnel available if users have questions about using PRPS. After September 16, the Board will resume normal business hours (Monday through Friday (except federal holidays) from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time). Please note that a petition submitted on Sunday, September 16, 2012, that satisfies the rules – including payment of the requisite fees, will be accorded a filing date of September 16, 2012. However, because September 16 falls on a Sunday, the petition accompanied by payment of the requisite fee may be submitted on the next succeeding secular or business day (35 U.S.C. 21), i.e., Monday, September 17, 2012. 

2. Can I use PRPS to search for a proceeding without registering? 

Yes, a non-registered user may search for a proceeding and review most documents related to a proceeding.  However, if you want to file a document or submit a fee payment in a proceeding, you must be a registered PRPS user.

3. Who can register?

Anyone can register to use PRPS and obtain a user ID, such as a pro se patent owner or an attorney who is not registered to practice before the Office under 37 CFR 11.6. 

4. What information is required to register?

When you are registering to use PRPS, you have to select a unique user ID and password, and enter your name and an email address.  If you are a USPTO registered practitioner, you should enter your registration number. 

5. Can I share my user ID with my paralegals or other attorneys in my organization?

Yes, a single user ID may be shared among a working group.  It is important to keep in mind, however, that PRPS docket display is based on the user ID.  Therefore, the registered user must ensure that sharing his or her user ID would not violate any protective order.

6. When will my petition be accorded a filing date?

Once the Office reviews the petition and determines whether the petition is complete and the appropriate fees have been paid, the Office will send a notice to the petitioner and patent owner.  The submission date of the compliant petition will be accorded as the filing date.

In the situation where a petition complies with all of the statutory requirements but contains only minor defects, the Office will notify the petitioner of the defects.  When the defects are corrected within the time period set forth in the notice, the Office will accord the original submission date as the filing date. 

For fee deficiencies, however, the Office will accord the later submission date when all appropriate fees have been paid because the fees are required by statute.  See, e.g., 35 U.S.C. 312(a)(1).