As the impact of the novel coronavirus virus (COVID-19) unfolds, all of us are being challenged with adapting to new ways of working and living. We are all adjusting to social distancing, remote workplaces and restricted travel. Like many other segments within the LexisNexis organization, LexisNexis IP is committed to the safety and well-being of our employees, customers and trading partners while continuing our business operations.
We are fortunate to have invested in a robust, state-of-the-art business continuity program in recent years so that our employees can effectively work from home. At this time, our services are unchanged. However, some of our content is dependent on updates from patent authorities from around the world. We are closely monitoring their ability to update their information, and we will notify you of any significant delays.
During this time of rapidly changing dynamics, access to accurate and timely information is critical. We would like to help you navigate this uncertain time, so LexisNexis IP is providing you with some free resources. We have aggregated the information shown below concerning the pandemic, the operations of patent authorities and links that have been made available from our family of LexisNexis companies. Please feel free to share and take advantage of the following links:
- LexisNexis® Legal & Professional has free resources from Lexis Practice Advisor®to help legal professionals, lawmakers and business leaders become better informed and navigate the legal issues and intricacies surrounding COVID-19
- Impact on the legal industry and the practice of law, as well as the U.S. court system, federal agencies, industries, businesses Law360 News & Analysis on COVID-19
- An overview of U.S. courts that are restricting access and altering their procedures Law360 Map of U.S. Court Closures
- From Elsevier, free health and medical research Coronavirus Information Center
- World Health Organization COVID-19 quick links (available in six languages)
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Globally, patent offices are issuing information on their current operations and requirements. Many offices have started to issue updates on current continuity of services. Recent summaries of announcements from major offices are shown below.
- USA – According to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) website, the USPTO is “waiving petition fees in certain situations for customers impacted by the coronavirus. This notice does not grant waivers or extensions of dates or requirements set by statute.”
- Canada – The Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) announced that all deadlines on IP matters falling between 3月 16 and 3月 31 will be extended to the next day. CIPO has remained opened but has stated users should expect significant delays for all CIPO services.
- China – China’s National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) will waive late fees for missed patent annuity payments if the reason is related to COVID-19.
- EPO – The European Patent Office (EPO) According to the website: “All time limits expiring on or after 15 3月 2020 are thus extended until 17 4月 2020. As regards time limits expiring before 15 3月 2020, the EPO has facilitated the use of legal remedies for users located in areas directly affected by disruptions due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The deadline could be extended further if “the dislocation extends beyond” 4月 17, 2020.
- South Korea: Has committed to expedite any patents related to the coronavirus and is offering financial support to companies working on COVID-19 vaccines and methods of prevention and diagnosis
- World IP Organization: announced changes for the registration of marks and has given automatic extension of time limits when a national IP office is not open to the public. It is urging all to use electronic communications.
We are fortunate to live in a time of connected technology, allowing us to stay in touch and share information. LexisNexis IP is committed to supporting you as we all strive to maintain our business objectives and protect the health of our employees, customers and communities.
Stay safe and healthy,
VP and MD of Global Commercial Markets