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Conyers: The Elijah J. McCoy USPTO Satellite Office Opening in Detroit Will Create Jobs and Help Address the Patent Backlog

May 17, 2012

(WASHINGTON) – Today, the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on the Implementation of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, a patent reform bill that President Obama signed into law in September 2011.  The Honorable David Kappos, Undersecretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) testified before the Committee.   Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.) released this statement following the hearing.

“I am glad that Director Kappos appeared before the Committee today to address, in part, the USPTO’s response to the current backlog of pending patent applications.  Currently, patent applicants can expect to wait an average of about three years between the filing date and approval of the patent.  This is not conducive to greater technological innovation and it is a source of great frustration for the many thousands of applicants.  USPTO must devote more resources to addressing this issue.    

“That is why I am pleased that the USPTO is opening its first satellite office in Detroit.  The Elijah J. McCoy satellite office in Detroit, which is scheduled to open on July 13 at 300 River Place, will create more than 100 high technology jobs, according to the USPTO.  By locating an office in a region home to the one of the greatest drivers of technological and economic innovation in history – the American auto industry – and which contains many top tier research universities, the USPTO is signaling its intent to do more to streamline the patent filing process and encourage innovation.  The opening of this satellite office will help facilitate patent filings by thousands of Detroit area businesses.  I look forward to working with the USPTO and the Commerce Department to ensure that the opening of this office becomes a model for others to emulate and ensure that it will be an effective step to help reduce the patent backlog.”                   



112th Congress