patent application

patent application

特許出願。米国における特許出願は、次の3つに大別される。

(A)non-provisional application(35 U.S.C. 111(a)に基づく通常特許出願)
(B)provisional application(35 U.S.C. 111(b)に基づく仮出願(審査されない))
(C)米国を指定国に含むPCT出願の米国内段階の出願

これらのうち、日本の出願人が米国に特許出願する際に最もよく利用するのが(A)と(C)。(A)には、パリ条約に基づく優先権を伴う出願や、USPTOに直接行う出願の他、continuing applications(継続性のある出願)も含まれる。

35 U.S.C. 111(a)
(a) IN GENERAL.—
(1) WRITTEN APPLICATION.—An application for patent shall be made, or authorized to be made, by the inventor, except as otherwise provided in this title, in writing to the Director.
(2) CONTENTS.—Such application shall include—
(A) a specification as prescribed by section 112;
(B) a drawing as prescribed by section 113; and
(C) an oath or declaration as prescribed by section 115.
(3) FEE, OATH OR DECLARATION, AND CLAIMS.—The application shall be accompanied by the fee required by law. The fee, oath or declaration, and 1 or more claims may be submitted after the filing date of the application, within such period and under such conditions, including the payment of a surcharge, as may be prescribed by the Director. Upon failure to submit the fee, oath or declaration, and 1 or more claims within such prescribed period, the application shall be regarded as abandoned.
(4) FILING DATE.—The filing date of an application shall be the date on which a specification, with or without claims, is received in the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

35 U.S.C. 111(b)
(b) PROVISIONAL APPLICATION.—
(1) AUTHORIZATION.—A provisional application for patent shall be made or authorized to be made by the inventor, except as otherwise provided in this title, in writing to the Director. Such application shall include—
(A) a specification as prescribed by section 112(a); and
(B) a drawing as prescribed by section 113.
(2) CLAIM.—A claim, as required by subsections (b) through (e) of section 112, shall not be required in a provisional application.
(3) FEE.—The application shall be accompanied by the fee required by law. The fee may be submitted after the filing date of the application, within such period and under such conditions, including the payment of a surcharge, as may be prescribed by the Director. Upon failure to submit the fee within such prescribed period, the application shall be regarded as abandoned.
(4) FILING DATE.—The filing date of a provisional application shall be the date on which a specification, with or without claims, is received in the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
(5) ABANDONMENT.—Notwithstanding the absence of a claim, upon timely request and as prescribed by the Director, a provisional application may be treated as an application filed under subsection (a). Subject to section 119(e)(3), if no such request is made, the provisional application shall be regarded as abandoned 12 months after the filing date of such application and shall not be subject to revival after such 12-month period.
(6) OTHER BASIS FOR PROVISIONAL APPLICATION.—Subject to all the conditions in this subsection and section 119(e), and as prescribed by the Director, an application for patent filed under subsection (a) may be treated as a provisional application for patent.
(7) NO RIGHT OF PRIORITY OR BENEFIT OF EARLIEST FILING DATE.—A provisional application shall not be entitled to the right of priority of any other application under section 119, 365(a), or 386(a) or to the benefit of an earlier filing date in the United States under section 120, 121, 365(c), or 386(c).
(8) APPLICABLE PROVISIONS.—The provisions of this title relating to applications for patent shall apply to provisional applications for patent, except as otherwise provided, and except that provisional applications for patent shall not be subject to sections 131 and 135.

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