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USPTO introduces rule changes pertaining to small entity status

The United States Patent and Trademark Office announced that changes to the rule pertaining to government use licenses and the small entity status for paying discounted patent fees will go into effect starting January 20, 2021.


The changes are designed to promote collaboration by independent inventors, small business concerns, and nonprofit organizations with the federal government and expand opportunities to qualify for the small entity status and discounted fees for inventions made during the course of federally funded or federally supported research.


The three exceptions relate to situations where an inventor, a small business concern, or a nonprofit organization grants a license to use the invention to a federal agency that is in a collaborative relationship with the small entity, and nevertheless is able to retain its small entity status despite the grant of the license.


For more information on the small entity government license use exception, read here.


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