USPTO's Shortened Deadline for Responding to Trademark Office Actions Comes Into Force
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) announced that starting from December 3, 2022, trademark applicants have 3 months to respond to most office actions. Previously, applicants had 6 months to respond to an office action. This change is due to Congress passing the Trademark Modernization Act of 2020, which updated some existing procedures. This update was specifically added to speed up the trademark application process; however, applicants now have less time to respond to office actions. The USPTO recognizes that some applicants may require additional time; therefore, a single 3-month deadline extension may be requested upon payment of a fee of USD $125.
This change applies to trademark applications filed pursuant to Trademark Act Sections 1(a) (use-based applications), 1(b) (intent-to-use applications), and 44 (foreign registration applications). However, the change does not apply to post-registration office actions until October 7, 2023.
Additionally, this change does not apply to applications filed pursuant to the Madrid Protocol under Section 66(a) of the Trademark Act. The response time remains 6 months for these applications because additional processing time is needed.