37 CFR 1.6: Receipt of correspondence

Taken from the Ninth Edition of the MPEP, Revision 07.2015, Last Revised in November 2015

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1.6    Receipt of correspondence.

  • (a) Date of receipt and Priority Mail Express® date of deposit. Correspondence received in the Patent and Trademark Office is stamped with the date of receipt except as follows:
    • (1) The Patent and Trademark Office is not open for the filing of correspondence on any day that is a Saturday, Sunday, or Federal holiday within the District of Columbia. Except for correspondence transmitted by facsimile under paragraph (a)(3) of this section, or filed electronically under paragraph (a)(4) of this section, no correspondence is received in the Office on Saturdays, Sundays, or Federal holidays within the District of Columbia.
    • (2) Correspondence filed in accordance with § 1.10 will be stamped with the date of deposit as Priority Mail Express® with the United States Postal Service.
    • (3) Correspondence transmitted by facsimile to the Patent and Trademark Office will be stamped with the date on which the complete transmission is received in the Patent and Trademark Office unless that date is a Saturday, Sunday, or Federal holiday within the District of Columbia, in which case the date stamped will be the next succeeding day which is not a Saturday, Sunday, or Federal holiday within the District of Columbia.
    • (4) Correspondence may be submitted using the Office electronic filing system only in accordance with the Office electronic filing system requirements. Correspondence submitted to the Office by way of the Office electronic filing system will be accorded a receipt date, which is the date the correspondence is received at the correspondence address for the Office set forth in § 1.1 when it was officially submitted.
  • (b) [Reserved]
  • (c) Correspondence delivered by hand. In addition to being mailed, correspondence may be delivered by hand during hours the Office is open to receive correspondence.
  • (d) Facsimile transmission. Except in the cases enumerated below, correspondence, including authorizations to charge a deposit account, may be transmitted by facsimile. The receipt date accorded to the correspondence will be the date on which the complete transmission is received in the United States Patent and Trademark Office, unless that date is a Saturday, Sunday, or Federal holiday within the District of Columbia. See paragraph (a)(3) of this section. To facilitate proper processing, each transmission session should be limited to correspondence to be filed in a single application or other proceeding before the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The application number of a patent application, the control number of a reexamination or supplemental examination proceeding, the interference number of an interference proceeding, the trial number of a trial proceeding before the Board, or the patent number of a patent should be entered as a part of the sender's identification on a facsimile cover sheet. Facsimile transmissions are not permitted and, if submitted, will not be accorded a date of receipt in the following situations:
    • (1) Correspondence as specified in § 1.4(e), requiring an original signature;
    • (2) Certified documents as specified in § 1.4(f);
    • (3) Correspondence that cannot receive the benefit of the certificate of mailing or transmission as specified in § 1.8(a)(2)(i)(A) through (D), (F), (I), and (K) and § 1.8(a)(2)(iii)(A), except that a continued prosecution application under § 1.53(d) may be transmitted to the Office by facsimile;
    • (4) Color drawings submitted under §§ 1.81,1.83 through 1.85, 1.152, 1.165, 1.173, 1.437, or 1.1026;
    • (5) A request for reexamination under § 1.510 or § 1.913, or a request for supplemental examination under § 1.610;
    • (6) Correspondence to be filed in an application subject to a secrecy order under §§ 5.1 through 5.5 of this chapter and directly related to the secrecy order content of the application;
    • (7) In contested cases and trials before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board, except as the Board may expressly authorize.
  • (e) [Reserved]
  • (f) Facsimile transmission of a patent application under § 1.53(d). In the event that the Office has no evidence of receipt of an application under § 1.53(d) (a continued prosecution application) transmitted to the Office by facsimile transmission, the party who transmitted the application under § 1.53(d) may petition the Director to accord the application under § 1.53(d) a filing date as of the date the application under § 1.53(d) is shown to have been transmitted to and received in the Office,
    • (1) Provided that the party who transmitted such application under § 1.53(d):
      • (i) Informs the Office of the previous transmission of the application under § 1.53(d) promptly after becoming aware that the Office has no evidence of receipt of the application under § 1.53(d);
      • (ii) Supplies an additional copy of the previously transmitted application under § 1.53(d); and
      • (iii) Includes a statement which attests on a personal knowledge basis or to the satisfaction of the Director to the previous transmission of the application under § 1.53(d) and is accompanied by a copy of the sending unit’s report confirming transmission of the application under § 1.53(d) or evidence that came into being after the complete transmission and within one business day of the complete transmission of the application under § 1.53(d).
    • (2) The Office may require additional evidence to determine if the application under § 1.53(d) was transmitted to and received in the Office on the date in question.
  • (g) Submission of the national stage correspondence required by § 1.495 via the Office electronic filing system. In the event that the Office has no evidence of receipt of the national stage correspondence required by § 1.495, which was submitted to the Office by the Office electronic filing system, the party who submitted the correspondence may petition the Director to accord the national stage correspondence a receipt date as of the date the correspondence is shown to have been officially submitted to the Office.
    • (1) The petition of this paragraph (g) requires that the party who submitted such national stage correspondence:
      • (i) Informs the Office of the previous submission of the correspondence promptly after becoming aware that the Office has no evidence of receipt of the correspondence under § 1.495;
      • (ii) Supplies an additional copy of the previously submitted correspondence;
      • (iii) Includes a statement that attests on a personal knowledge basis, or to the satisfaction of the Director, that the correspondence was previously officially submitted; and
      • (iv) Supplies a copy of an acknowledgment receipt generated by the Office electronic filing system, or equivalent evidence, confirming the submission to support the statement of paragraph (g)(1)(iii) of this section.
    • (2) The Office may require additional evidence to determine if the national stage correspondence was submitted to the Office on the date in question.
[48 FR 2707, Jan. 20, 1983, effective Feb. 27, 1983; 48 FR 4285, Jan. 31, 1983; para. (a), 49 FR 552, Jan. 4, 1984, effective Apr. 1, 1984; revised, 58 FR 54494, Oct. 22, 1993, effective Nov. 22, 1993; para. (a) amended, 61 FR 56439, Nov. 1, 1996, effective Dec. 2, 1996; paras. (d)(3), (d)(6) & (e) amended, para. (f) added, 62 FR 53131, Oct. 10, 1997, effective Dec. 1, 1997; para (a)(1) revised and para. (a)(4) added, 64 FR 48900, Sept. 8, 1999, effective Oct. 30, 1999; para.(d)(9) revised, 65 FR 54604, Sept. 8, 2000, effective Nov. 7, 2000; para. (d)(5) revised, 65 FR 76756, Dec. 7, 2000, effective Feb. 5, 2001; para. (b) removed and reserved and paras. (e), (f) & (f)(1)(iii) revised, 68 FR 14332, Mar. 25, 2003, effective May 1, 2003; paras. (a)(4), (d)(7) and (d)(8) removed and reserved, and paras. (d), introductory text, (d)(3), and (d)(4) revised, 68 FR 48286, Aug. 13, 2003, effective Sept. 12, 2003; para. (d)(9) revised, 69 FR 49959, Aug. 12, 2004, effective Sept. 13, 2004; para. (d)(4) revised and para. (e) removed and reserved, 69 FR 56481, Sept. 21, 2004, effective Sept. 21, 2004; paras. (a)(4) & (g) added, 72 FR 2770, Jan. 23, 2007, effective Jan. 23, 2007; para. (d)(3) revised, 77 FR 42150, July 17, 2012, effective Sept. 16, 2012;; paras. (d) introductory text and (d)(9) revised, 77 FR 46615, Aug. 6, 2012, effective Sept. 16, 2012; para. (d) revised, 78 FR 62368, Oct. 21, 2013, effective Dec. 18, 2013; paras. (a) and (a)(2) revised, 79 FR 63036, Oct. 22, 2014, effective Oct. 22, 2014; paras. (d)(3)-(4) and (6) revised, 80 FR 17918, Apr. 2, 2015, effective May 13, 2015]