Force on 8 june 1995 the term of protection is 20

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force on 8 June 1995, the term of protection is 20 years from the filing date, or 17 years from the date of grant, whichever is longer. The term of patent protection may be extended to fully compensate applicants for any amount of USPTO-caused delays; the period of extension is determined by formula. Design patents have a term of protection of 14 years from the date of grant. Patents are valid from the day of issuance. With some exceptions, applications are published after a period of 18
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United States WT/TPR/S/126 Page 92 months from the earliest filing date. The United States participates in WIPO's Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT). 4. Patent applications filed in a foreign country that is a WTO Member or a signatory to the Paris Convention are granted a priority period of up to 12-months counted from the date of application to the USPTO . For international applications from participants of the PCT, the priority period is 30 months. International applications under the PCT may be submitted by U.S. nationals to the USPTO or to the WIPO's International Bureau, if the national security provisions pertaining to the patent allow a filing abroad. All applicants must be inventors. The USPTO has been actively participating with agencies from other countries in the Committee on Reform of the PCT, in the preparation of a new blueprint for enhancing the quality of searches and examination for patent applications filed under the PCT. The USPTO supports patent law harmonization and the convergence of national and international practices. 246 The USPTO's view is that the PCT process helps to promote U.S. commerce globally. 247 In FY 2002, some 42,000 (out of 114,000 world-wide) international patent applications were filed in the United States using the PCT process. 5. The Patent and Trademark Office Authorization Act of 2002 (Title III, Subtitle A of P.L. 107- 273) 248 , enacted in November 2002, introduced changes and technical corrections to the American Inventors Protection Act of 1999 (AIPA), which, among other things, had introduced compensation for delays in processing patent applications, guaranteed a minimum 17-year patent term, and enhanced third-party participation for the re-examination of patents. 249 The 2002 Act introduced a number of administrative requirements and guidelines, as well as amendments to federal patent law. For example, it amended federal patent law to provide that third-party requesters may invoke inter partes re-examination of a patent in light of new evidence (prior art) affecting its patentability. The Act makes this retroactive to the enactment of the Intellectual Property and Communications Omnibus Reform Act of 1999. The Act also amended 35 U.S.C. by adding the provision that the existence of a substantial new question of patentability is not precluded by the fact that a patent was considered by the USPTO.
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