Issue 81 | May 27, 2003
Patent Customers Advised to FAX Communications to USPTO
 The latest information concerning faxing of patent information to the USPTO was posted on April 22, 2003 at http://www.uspto.gov/web/offices/pac/dapp/opla/

According to the Notice, facsimile transmissions of communications can significantly expedite processing of those communications within the Office. For example, when an assignment document is faxed to the Office, the average cycle time to process, record, and send a notice of recordation is one calendar day, whereas when the document is mailed to the Office, the average cycle time is 113 calendar days.

The Notice lists official telephone numbers for faxing various items to the Office of Initial Patent Examination, Technology Centers, Office of Patent Publication, Office of Public Records, and Office of Petitions. However, certain patent correspondence may NOT be faxed to the USPTO, including
Correspondence relating to registration to practice before the USPTO in patent cases, enrollment or disciplinary matters

Petitions for an extension of time Documents required by statute to be certified under 37 CFR 1.4(f)

Patent applications other than Continued Prosecution Applications (CPAs) and Requests for Continued Examination ("RCEs") under 37 CFR 1.114

Correspondence in an interference that an examiner-in-chief orders to be filed by hand or "Express Mail," the filing of agreements between parties to an interference, and other papers in an interference under, e.g., 37 CFR 1.6(d)(9)

Drawings submitted under 37 CFR 1.811.85, except when included with an Issue Fee transmittal and faxed to (703) 746-4000

A request for reexamination under 37 CFR 1.510 or 1.913

Correspondence required to be filed in a patent application subject to a Secrecy Order and directly related to the secrecy order content of the application
The Notice advises Applicants to use the certificate of facsimile transmission procedures when submitting a reply to an Office action by facsimile (see 37 CFR 1.6 and 1.8), and to retain the return receipt in the event that the Office has no record of the facsimile submission. However, only numbers with 746 or 842 exchanges after the area code (including official fax numbers for Technology Centers) will automaticlly fax-back a return receipt. Nonetheless, even if a return receipt is not desired, at least the first page of the facsimile transmission must clearly indicate the date and time the transmission is sent, an identification of the business, other entity, or individual sending the transmission, and the telephone number of the sending machine or of such business, other entity, or individual under 47 U.S.C. 227(d)(1)(B) and 47 CFR 68.318(d).

To discuss this topic further, please feel free to contact the author, Bill Heinze, at Thomas, Kayden, Horstemeyer & Risley in Atlanta, Georgia USA.

The information contained in this email is provided for informational purposes only and does not represent legal advice. Neither the APLF nor the author intends to create an attorney client relationship by providing this information to you through this message.