On January 16, 2018, the Brazilian Patent and Trademark Office (BPTO) issued a bulletin informing that the its patent prosecution division will implement a pilot measure aiming to expedite substantial examination of patent applications.

This pilot measure will be a pre-examination of sorts, taking into account irregularities related to prior art, indicated by other IP offices, and allowing applicants in Brazil to address those ahead of full examination.

Each patent technical division at the BPTO will issue a total of 40 pre-examination opinions. The applicant will then have a 60-day deadline to reply, otherwise the patent application will be shelved.

This measure should address the Patent backlog in Brazil, as it might reduce the number of full technical examinations performed by the BPTO and can also anticipate the Office’s technical considerations beforehand. Despite that, it is still a pilot program, which means that the BPTO will evaluate its development and results before considering implementing it in the patent prosecution process indefinitively.

This new procedure will begin as of today, January 23, 2018.