How to be unwise when naming your firm

One of the dumbest things that you can do when you are naming your intellectual property firm, it turns out, is picking a name that is more than 35 characters in length.  If you make this mistake, it means you often can’t get paid. 

A related dumb thing is arranging to have a street address that exceeds 35 characters in length.  This, too, might mean that you can’t get paid.

It turns out that there is a simple and quick fix for this problem, as I will mention at the end of this blog article.

Continue reading “How to be unwise when naming your firm”

Time of day at IB returns to normal for US filers

On March 13 I blogged that US filers filing documents at the International Bureau needed to pay extra close attention to what time it is in Switzerland.  The reason is that in the US, Daylight Saving Time happened on March 13.  But it did not happen on that day in Switzerland.  This meant that for the past two weeks, a US-based filer in (for example) the Mountain Time zone would be able to e-file in the IB as late as 5PM and still get a same-day filing date.  This differed from the usual drop-dead time of 4PM.

Today (March 27, 2022) is the day that Daylight Saving Time happens in Switzerland. The consequence of this is that the time difference between the US filer’s time zone and the time at the IB is back to normal.  So for a US-based filer in the Mountain Time zone, the drop-dead time returns today to the usual 4PM.

This change affects for example a US-based filer filing a PCT application at the RO/IB, and it affects the US-based filer filing a design application in the IB’s Hague Agreement e-filing system.  It also affects the US-based filer filing documents at the IB relating to the Madrid Protocol, such as for example a Subsequent Designation.

Most readers of my blog will appreciate that the correct terminology is not “Daylight Savings Time” but “Daylight Saving Time”.

Many readers will also appreciate that EU has been trying for the past two years to get rid of this clock-changing.  There have also been largely feckless efforts in various states of the US to bring an end to this clock-changing. I personally would like it if the place where I am located, and the places where patent and trademark offices are that I care about, would all bring an end to clock-changing.

Filing at the International Bureau and Daylight Saving Time

It’s that time of year again.  The time of year when it is important to keep track of the fact that Daylight Saving Time is different in Switzerland from the way it is in the United States.  This is important because you might be in the US, and you might be e-filing some document with the International Bureau of WIPO. For the next two weeks (until March 27), the drop-dead time for e-filing a document at the IB is an hour later than usual.  Usually, to get a same-day filing date at the IB, an American filer would have to complete the e-filing by 4PM Mountain Time (which is midnight in Geneva).  But for the next two weeks, you get an extra hour.  You could complete the e-filing by as late as 5PM Mountain Time and it would still be a same-day filing date.

This might affect you because you are e-filing a PCT patent application at RO/IB.  This might affect you because you are e-filing a Hague Agreement design application at the IB.  This might affect you because you are paying a set of Madrid Protocol renewal fees at the IB.  Or maybe you are filing an Article 19 amendment or a Demand at the IB.

Most readers of my blog will appreciate that the correct terminology is not “Daylight Savings Time” but “Daylight Saving Time”.

Many readers will also appreciate that EU has been trying and trying to bring this to an end.  There have also been largely feckless efforts in various states of the US to bring an end to this clock-changing. I personally would like it if the place where I am located, and the places where patent and trademark offices are that I care about, would all bring an end to clock-changing.

Results: the 2021 US Tote Boards

Here are the results for the 2021 US Tote Boards.

The firm ranked first in filing of granted US plant patents in 2021 is Randall | Danskin.  The runner-up is Koenig IP Works, PLLC.  This is the third annual US Plant Patent Tote Board.

The firm ranked first in filing of granted US design patents in 2021 is Banner Witcoff.  The runner-up is Birch, Stewart, Kolasch & Birch, LLP.  This is the tenth annual US Design Patent Toteboard.

The firm ranked first in filing of granted US utility patents in 2021 is Oblon, McClelland, Maier & Neustadt, L.L.P.  The runner-up is Sughrue Mion PLLC.  This is the seventh annual US Utility Patent Toteboard.

The firm ranked first in filing of granted US trademark registrations in 2021 is Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu, P.C.  The runner-up is Muncy, Geissler, Olds & Lowe, P.C.   This is the seventh annual US Trademark Registration Toteboard.

Welcome developments with DAS – Ireland

click to enlarge

This is a busy time for good news about DAS.  One piece of good news about DAS is that the Intellectual Property Office of Ireland will become an Accessing Office in DAS on February 17, 2022.  It will participate as an Accessing Office with respect to the following:

  • National industrial design applications
  • National patent applications
  • National trademark applications
  • National utility model applications
  • PCT international applications

Five days remaining to hand in your numbers for the 2021 Tote Boards

Hello Folks.  There are five days remaining to hand in your numbers for the 2021 Tote Boards.

Every year, after the Tote Boards get finished and published, an email message will arrive from some law firm that did not hand in its numbers on time.  The law firm begs to please be included in one or another of the Tote Boards.  The result of course, is that some other firm that was, say, listed in third place in one of the Tote Boards might now end up in fourth place.  But that firm might already have posted on their web site that they had earned third place on a Tote Board!

The way to avoid such problems of course is simply for you to hand in your numbers before the closing date.  This year, the closing date will be Wednesday, February 2, 2022.  That is five days from now.  Please get your numbers in by the close of business on Wednesday, February, 2022.  To hand in your numbers, click here.

Progress with the 2021 Tote Boards

Two business days have passed since I announced the opening of the opportunity for firms to hand in their numbers for the 2021 Tote Boards.  You can see the past tote boards here.  These are the listings of law firms, ranked according to which firms obtained how many patents and trademarks registrations for their clients in the previous calendar year.  

In these first two business days we have received reports from about two dozen firms.  

Clearly there are quite a few firms that have not yet handed in their numbers.

As a reminder, the questionnaires will close on Wednesday, February 2, 2022.  If you have not yet handed in your firm’s numbers, please do so right away.  There is no good reason to foot-drag on handing in your numbers.  

To hand in your numbers, click here.