Patent offices around the world are reacting differently to the current COVID-19 crisis. Some, such as Brazil and South Africa, have simply shut down until the end of April and pretty much all deadlines are extended until they reopen. Others, such as the UK and the European Patent Office have announced a shorter initial partial shut-down, with several types of deadline remaining in place and some Hearings continuing.
In the US, under the ‘CARE’ initiative, deadlines remain in place but the fees to request reinstatement (at the discretion of the Patent Office) will be waived. If you are concerned about your patent rights, please contact us so we can advise the best and most cost-effective strategy to keep your rights alive.
Paul Harrison, Senior European Patent Attorney for ip21 Ltd