USPTO and Federal Courts Remain Open

October 7, 2013

During the general government shutdown that began October 1, 2013:

  • The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office will remain open, using prior year reserve fee collections to operate as usual for approximately four weeks.  However, the 18th Annual Independent Inventors Conference scheduled for October 11-12 at the USPTO has been cancelled.  Should the USPTO exhaust its reserve funds before the general government shutdown comes to an end, they will shut down at that time, although a very small staff would continue to work to accept new applications and maintain IT infrastructure, among other functions.
  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is largely closed and is not accepting filings that require Fiscal Year 2014 fees.  Some operations will continue, however.  For example, the Circulatory System Devices Panel will proceed as scheduled with key meetings this week to advance approval processes for certain Medtronic and CardioMEMS devices.
  • The Federal Courts, including the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, are continuing to operate on remaining budget surplus. The U.S. Supreme Court will continue to conduct normal operations until at least October 11.
  • The U.S. International Trade Commission has closed and is postponing its patent infringement investigations until further notice.  All case deadlines are tolled.
  • The Federal Trade Commission is closed and has postponed its patent troll investigation until further notice.
By Medtech Briefs

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