“The backlog is indeed our biggest problem.” ~ USPTO Director David Kappos

CBS News ran a story on Sunday on the growing backlog at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Since the federal patent agency was created in 1790, the U.S Patent and Trademark Office has issued 7,752,677 patents.

Now, with an average wait time of 36 months and a backlog of 700,000 applications, Patent Office Director David Kappos says speeding up the process will help the economy. “The backlog is indeed our biggest problem. It represents innovations trapped in this agency that otherwise could be creating jobs.”

Kappos wants to cut the waiting time from 36 to 20 months and the backlog in half but he needs more money to hire an additional 1200 patent examiners and update computers. “It’s no taxpayer dollars at all– all the fees we collect come from patent applicants.”

Congress sets the fees charged by the patent office. The legislative branch also does not permit the patent office keep all $2 billion in its annual revenue, by diverting $200 million dollars a year for other federal budget items.  Legislation that would end fee diversion and empower USPTO to adjust its own fees is pending.

Many say they would pay higher application fees if it meant a more functional patent office.

To see the full story, see here.

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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by saveinventors, PriorSmart. PriorSmart said: Just found this: CBS News Highlights Growing Backlog at the U.S. #Patent & Trademark Office – http://bit.ly/ccvBT9 (at patentbaristas) […]

  2. It’s good to see that the patent law lobby appears to be making a big push toward publicizing IP issues. I saw the Kappos segment about the plight of the USPTO, its massive backlog, and the fee diversion problem. If this continues, public pressure and awareness may force Congress to finally start addressing patent law issues (including patent reform), and we may even start to turn things around for the USPTO and our economy.

  3. […] comments on a CBS piece featured in this very blog the other day in his August 10th entry, CBS News Highlights Growing Backlog at the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Here's what Albainy-Jenei shares with the gentle reader regarding the well-known admission of the […]

  4. […] Story of the 700,000 application backlog at the U.S. Patent Office finally told in the “mainstream media” (Patent Baristas) […]