The USPTO in Its Own Words  


What is the History of the USPTO? 


United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) history spans more than 200 years. In 1790, President George Washington established the first Patent Act, under which the Secretary of State and Executive signed off on patents. The responsibility was soon transferred to clerks in the State Department, and in 1802 given to the newly created role of clerk in the Department of State, which became the first patent office. Trademark registration was added to the Office’s functions in 1881.

The USPTO has issued more than 8 million patents since the Patent Act of 1790, and generally receives more than 485,000 patent applications and around 300,000 trademark applications per year.

Who is the USPTO?


The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is the federal agency for granting U.S. patents and registering trademarks. In doing this, the USPTO fulfills the mandate of Article I, Section 8, Clause 8, of the Constitution that the legislative branch “promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.” The USPTO registers trademarks based on the commerce clause of the Constitution (Article I, Section 8, Clause 3)…The USPTO advises the president of the United States, the secretary of commerce, and U.S. government agencies on intellectual property (IP) policy, protection, and enforcement; and promotes the stronger and more effective IP protection around the world. The USPTO furthers effective IP protection for U.S. innovators and entrepreneurs worldwide by working with other agencies to secure strong IP provisions in free trade and other international agreements. It also provides training, education, and capacity building programs designed to foster respect for IP and encourage the development of strong IP enforcement regimes by U.S. trading.


Where is the USPTO located?



USPTO Offices


Cool Map of Headquarters:  




As of September 30, 2009, the end of the U.S. government’s fiscal year, the PTO had 9,716 employees, nearly all of whom are based at its five-building headquarters complex in Alexandria. Of those, 6,242 were patent examiners (almost all of whom were assigned to examine utility patents; only 99 were assigned to examine design patents) and 388 were trademark examining attorneys; the rest are support staff.

At end of FY Employees Patent examiners Trademark examining attorneys
2009 9,716 6,242 388
2008 9,518 6,055 398
2007 8,913 5,477 404
2006 8,189 4,883 413
2005 7,363 4,258 357


How is the USPTO Organized?




At Mohr IP Law in our own words-we encourage you to let your ideas take flight. Call or email us today (503-336-1214, to schedule a phone or in-person consult at our headquarters:


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