Extension of the Modified COVID-19 Prioritized Examination Pilot Program

CourtPatent And Trademark Office
Citation86 FR 74406
Record Number2021-28359
Publication Date30 December 2021
74406
Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 248 / Thursday, December 30, 2021 / Notices
non-containment traps and bycatch of
non-target species is expected to be
minimal. Bycatch from the spiny lobster
traps are expected to be similar to that
from the spiny lobster trap fishery in the
South Atlantic.
The applicant has requested the EFP
be effective for a 2-year period from the
date the EFP is issued.
NMFS finds the application warrants
further consideration based on a
preliminary review. Possible conditions
the agency may impose on the permit,
if granted, include but are not limited
to, a prohibition on conducting
activities within marine protected areas,
marine sanctuaries, or special
management zones. Additionally, NMFS
may require special protections for ESA-
listed species and designated critical
habitat, and may require particular gear
markings. A final decision on issuance
of the EFP will depend on NMFS’
review of public comments received on
the application, consultations with the
appropriate fishery management agency
of the affected state, the South Atlantic
Fishery Management Council, the U.S.
Coast Guard, and a determination that
the activities to be taken under the EFP
are consistent with all applicable laws
and regulations.
Authority: 16 U.S.C 1801 et seq.
Dated: December 27, 2021.
Karen Abrams,
Acting Director, Office of Sustainable
Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2021–28352 Filed 12–29–21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510–22–P
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Patent and Trademark Office
[Docket No.: PTO–P–2021–0037]
Extension of the Modified COVID–19
Prioritized Examination Pilot Program
AGENCY
: United States Patent and
Trademark Office, Department of
Commerce.
ACTION
: Notice.
SUMMARY
: The United States Patent and
Trademark Office (USPTO or Office) is
extending the modified COVID–19
Prioritized Examination Pilot Program.
Requests that are compliant with the
pilot program’s requirements and are
filed on or before March 31, 2022, will
be accepted. The USPTO will evaluate
whether to terminate or further extend
the program during this extension
period.
DATES
: The COVID–19 Prioritized
Examination Pilot Program is extended
as of December 30, 2021, to run until
March 31, 2022.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
:
Robert A. Clarke, Editor of the Manual
of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP)
(571–272–7735; robert.clarke@
uspto.gov).
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION
: On May
14, 2020, the USPTO published a notice
on the implementation of the COVID–19
Prioritized Examination Pilot Program.
See COVID–19 Prioritized Examination
Pilot Program, 85 FR 28932 (May 14,
2020) (COVID–19 Track One Notice). On
September 3, 2021, the USPTO
published a notice extending the
program to December 31, 2021, and
modifying it by removing the limit on
the number of applications that could
receive prioritized examination. See
Modification of COVID–19 Prioritized
Examination Pilot Program, 86 FR 49522
(September 3, 2021) (Modifying Notice).
The COVID–19 Track One Notice
indicated that an applicant may request
prioritized examination without
payment of the prioritized examination
fee and associated processing fee if: (1)
The application’s claim(s) covered a
product or process related to COVID–19,
(2) the product or process was subject to
an applicable Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) approval for
COVID–19 use, and (3) the applicant
met other requirements noted in the
COVID–19 Track One Notice. As of
November 29, 2021, 180 patents had
issued from applications granted
prioritized status under the pilot
program. The average total pendency,
including time consumed by continued
examination, from filing date to issue
date for those applications was 276
days. The shortest pendency from filing
date to issue date for those applications
was 75 days.
The Modifying Notice indicated that
the pilot program would expire on
December 31, 2021. In this notice, the
Office is extending the pilot program by
setting the expiration date as March 31,
2022. The Office will evaluate whether
to terminate or further extend the
program during this extension period. If
the USPTO determines that a further
extension of the pilot program is
appropriate, the agency will publish a
subsequent notice to the public further
extending the program.
Unless the pilot program is further
extended by a subsequent notice,
following the expiration of this
extension, the pilot program will be
terminated, and applicants may instead
seek to use the Prioritized Examination
(Track One) Program. Applications
accorded prioritized examination under
the pilot program will not lose that
status merely because the application is
still pending after the date the pilot
program is terminated. In other words,
applications accepted into the pilot
program will continue to be examined
under prioritized examination status
until that status is terminated for one or
more reasons, as described in the
COVID–19 Track One Notice.
The Track One Program permits an
applicant to have an application
advanced out of turn (accorded special
status) for examination under 37 CFR
1.102(e) if the applicant timely files a
request for prioritized (Track One)
examination accompanied by the
appropriate fees and meets the other
conditions of 37 CFR 1.102(e). See
MPEP 708.02(b)(2). The current fee
schedule is available at www.uspto.gov/
learning-and-resources/fees-and-
payment/uspto-fee-schedule.
The Track One Program does not have
the restrictions of the COVID–19
Prioritized Examination Pilot Program
on the types of inventions for which
special status may be sought, as the
Track One Program does not require a
connection to any particular technology.
Moreover, delays associated with the
determination of whether an application
presents a claim that covers a product
or process related to COVID–19 and
whether the product or process was
subject to an applicable FDA approval
for COVID–19 use may be avoided
under the Track One Program.
Andrew Hirshfeld,
Commissioner for Patents, Performing the
Functions and Duties of the Under Secretary
of Commerce for Intellectual Property and
Director of the United States Patent and
Trademark Office.
[FR Doc. 2021–28359 Filed 12–29–21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510–16–P
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
Department of the Army
[Docket ID: USA–2021–HQ–0013]
Submission for OMB Review;
Comment Request
AGENCY
: Department of the Army,
Department of Defense (DoD).
ACTION
: 30-Day information collection
notice.
SUMMARY
: The Department of Defense
has submitted to OMB for clearance the
following proposal for collection of
information under the provisions of the
Paperwork Reduction Act.
DATES
: Consideration will be given to all
comments received by January 31, 2022.
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