September 22, 2023

by Dennis Crouch

The USPTO Workplace of Enrollment & Self-discipline’s listing of registered patent attorneys and brokers contains 48,625 people. Since there aren’t any annual dues, CLE requirement, and even check-in many people proceed to remain on the rolls regardless that they aren’t working towards patent regulation.  One instance is my colleague Professor Royce Barondes who handed the patent bar examination previous to regulation faculty after which by no means practiced within the discipline. As an alternative, he practiced regulation at Cravath in NYC and now teaches enterprise programs, contracts, and firearms regulation. I wished to get a extra correct variety of of us presently working towards within the patent prosecution space. Do do that, I downloaded and parsed by way of USPTO information for utility patent purposes filed since mid 2018 and which were made public. (Sequence codes 16 and 17).

The Totals: 26,756 practitioners are related to no less than one utility filed over the previous 4 years; with 23,793 related to no less than 10 completely different utility patent purposes.  About 80{ffabfa4d7ffd9b3fd000de00ee9a0a81df1e9b189f93ca1738d44fdcecc3f542} are attorneys with the remaining 20{ffabfa4d7ffd9b3fd000de00ee9a0a81df1e9b189f93ca1738d44fdcecc3f542} being patent brokers. The consequence right here doesn’t essentially imply that each one of those attorneys labored on patent prosecution as a result of many corporations use a complete buyer quantity that lists all registered attorneys within the agency’s patent group.  This results in loopy conditions like patent agent Maki Saitoh of Oblon being related to 31,000+ laid open purposes filed over the previous 4 years.  As well as, we now have some undercounting as a result of some of us doing patent prosecution work will not be listed within the buyer quantity (e.g., typically in home counsel is not going to be listed).

I discussed Oblon above. Though Oblon will not be within the top-25 of corporations by way of patent attorneys, they’re the #1 filer of US patent purposes adopted intently by Sughrue.  They’re able to file so many purposes as a result of most of their apps declare precedence to a international or PCT submitting — in order that they don’t want to write down a brand new authentic utility.  Some corporations with plenty of patent attorneys don’t do a lot patent prosecution work.  An excessive of that is Kirkland & Ellis that has over 100 patent attorneys however doesn’t do any patent prosecution.