More Patent Offices hit the Highway

A bilateral agreement between the patent offices of Brazil (BPTO) and the United States (USPTO) for a pilot program for the examination of patents in a Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) is now in effect.

The pilot program will run for two years from January, 2016 to January 2018 or until each of the Offices has accepted 150 US or BR priority patent applications under the program.

Using the PPH, an applicant for a patent of invention, at both the BPTO and the USPTO, can prioritize examination of one of the applications based on examination of the other application.  It will also be possible for examiners from both offices to share the results of searches and examinations of the same patent application to expedite examination.

Australian patent applicants can use the Global Patent Prosecution Highway (GPPH) to expedite the examination process in Australia. Under the GPPH, if an applicant has at least one claim in a patent application allowed in another Patent Office that is a party to the agreement, the applicant may then request that the Australian Patent Office accelerate examination of the corresponding claims in application. The GPPH currently involves 19 Patent Offices including Australia, USA, Canada, Japan, Korea, Russia and Spain.