Whilst counterintuitive, the United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued a new fee schedule, effective Jauary7 17, 2015, which actually has the effect of–in most cases–reducing the fees to be paid for applying for trademark protection. The new fees can be found here.
This restructuring of fees is driven by the Trademark Office’s desire to encourage electronic filing applications and follow-on communication with Trademark Office personnel . The new fees are designed to incent paperless filing and simple, well thought out choices in trademark applications.
TEAS is the electronic filing system of the U.S. Trademark Office and the new fees encourage greater use of the TEAS system.
- $50 fee reduction for filing a trademark application using the regular TEAS application form (dropping from $325 per class to $275 per class)
- $50 fee reduction for a TEAS Plus application (dropping from $275 per class to $225 per class)
- $100 fee reduction per class for a TEAS renewal application (dropping from $400 per class to $300 per class)
- In addition, there is a new fee/application category, TEAS-RF, which allows for extension of protection to the United States for marks under the Madrid Protocol (for international marks) into a U.S. trademark application will be reduced to $275, which is $50 less than the regular TEAS application fee.
Paper applications are still accepted, but they are not favored. Paper applications require submission of a fee of $375.
The Trademark Office relies greatly on telecommuting professional to handle its workflow. As reported in 2013:
Today the agency has almost 8,000 employees who work remotely from one to five days per week, including 4,100 who do so four to five days per week and more than 1,000 who work far outside the commuting range of USPTO’s Alexandria, Va., headquarters. And although there are undoubtedly still papers in some employees’ briefcases, the agency’s telecommute-friendly workflows are now entirely electronic.
So, the new fees not only save trademark owners money, they also encourage them to use the electronic system which works best for the Trademark Office’s workflow.