IPOPHL-USPTO PATENT PROSECUTION HIGHWAY

Director General Ricardo Blancaflor(left) and USPTO Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property Teresa Stanek Rea (right)representing Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office David Kappos shake hands at the signing of  theMemorandum of Understanding (MOU) that operationalizes the Patent Prosecution Highway Agreement which will take effect on January 1, 2013.

Following the PPH Agreement with the Japan Patent Office which commenced early this year, the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) through its Director General, Atty. Ricardo Blancaflor, has signed a two-way PPH Agreement with USPTO Deputy Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property Teresa Stanek Rea representing Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office David Kappos of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) last October 4, 2012 in Geneva, Switzerland.

The Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) is a framework in which an application whose claims have been determined to be patentable in the Office of First Filing (OFF) is eligible to go through an accelerated examination in the Office of Second Filing (OSF) with a simple procedure upon an applicant’s request. 

In this PPH Agreement, applicants with patent applications filed with IPOPHL with corresponding USPTO filings who wish to avail of the said program can benefit from an advanced-out-of-turn examination wherein said application will be prioritized among others. 

The IPOPHL is a member of the 27-country PPH organization which includes modern IP offices of more advanced countries such as the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), European Patent Office (EPO), Japan Patent Office (JPO) and Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO). As of this posting, IPOPHL and IPOS (Singapore) are the only ASEAN- member countries which are part of the expanding PPH Network.The PPH program is part of a global effort to initiate work-sharing and reduce redundancy of work in IP offices. 

The USPTO-IPOPHL PPH Program will commence on January 1, 2013 and will last for one (1) year, or until December 31, 2013. All updates regarding this will soon be uploaded in the IPOPHL website. 

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