H.R. 4818, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2005 (Consolidated Appropriations Act) was signed by the President and enacted into law on December 8, 2004. The Consolidated Appropriations Act revises certain patent application and maintenance fees; provides separate fees for a basic filing fee, a search fee, and an examination fee; and requires an additional fee for any patent application whose specification and drawings exceed 100 sheets of paper (application size fee). The new patent fees are now effective and will remain in effect during the remainder of fiscal year 2005 and during fiscal year 2006. The patent maintenance fee changes apply to any maintenance fee payment made on or after December 8, 2004, regardless of the filing or issue date of the patent for which the fee is submitted. The revised maintenance fees took effect on December 8, 2004. Thus, any maintenance fee paid at any time on (or after) December 8, 2004 is subject to the revised maintenance fee amounts set forth in the Consolidated Appropriations Act.
Note: If you are paying via the USPTO’s Internet Web site, there will likely be a delay in updating the maintenance-fee information on the USPTO’s Office of Finance On-Line Shopping Web page. Therefore, if paying on-line, please refer to the updated fee schedule to ensure that you include the appropriate updated fee amount. Maintenance fees must be timely paid in the appropriate amount to avoid expiration of a patent.