As part of our dedication to helping our clients stay up-to-date on the ever-changing landscape as it relates to the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve compiled the following highlights of changes to patent, trademark, and copyright operations around the world.

The following are a few recent updates identified in the past two months. However, as always, a complete list of countries may be found in our Google Document.

Update Highlights

  • The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has extended its COVID-19 Prioritized Examination Pilot Program to include requests filed on or before March 31, 2022. The program was previously extended to December 31, 2021, with no limit on the number of applications that could receive prioritized examination.
  • The Hong Kong IP Office has confirmed that, from January 25, 2022, it will move into special work arrangements due to the severity of the local pandemic situation. Going forward, its public service counter will be open on selected days, with body temperature checks being undertaken for any visitors. It is understood that in-person hearings are still going ahead, but parties are "encouraged" to resolve their disputes by alternative modes (such as remotely).
  • The Indian IP Office has extended the period of limitation for all proceedings until at least February 28, 2022. It follows a new order issued by the Indian Supreme Court on January 10, 2022, and follows a surge in COVID-19 cases in India due to the circulation of the Omicron variant. The move means that any deadline that would have expired between March 15, 2020 and February 28, 2022 have an additional limitation period of 90 days from March 1, 2022.
  • Other general closures & deadline extensions have been added to the document.