Fiscal Year 2010 – Increase in Allowance Rate Over Fiscal Year 2009.
Below is an excerpt from a recent post at the Director’s Forum: David Kappos’ Public Blog, which commented on the hard work being done at the USPTO to improve patent quality and increase work output.
Overall in FY 2010, the allowance rate increased to 45.6%, compared to an allowance rate of 41.3% in FY 2009. In addition, actions per disposal decreased to 2.42 from 2.73 in FY 2009. Furthermore, as a result of a concerted campaign to begin turning the tide on our backlog, the patent application backlog dropped from 718,835 at the end of FY 2009, to 708,535 at the end of FY 2010. Pretty remarkable considering that application filings were up about 4%, that our examiner workforce shrunk and we were unable to authorize overtime for most of the year due to funding challenges, and that we affirmatively gave our examiners *more* time to examine each application as a clear signal that quality is our first priority.
We note the allowance rate increase, which had been on the decline for a handful of years, is apparently now on the rise. Kudos to Kappos et al.