The U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) David Kappos recently announced that they will be opening its first ever satellite location in Detroit, Michigan in 2011. This location is likely to create around 100 jobs in an effort to hire more patent examiners and is the first step towards their Nationwide Workforce Program. This location will only be examining patent applications, as the USPTO Virginia location will continue to process all trademark applications, along with patent applications. With the addition of this satellite office, the USPTO is hoping to quickly reduce their backlog of over 700,000 patent applications with the hopes of opening more offices nationwide. The Detroit location was chosen among many cities for its high percentage of engineers and scientists, along with a significant number of patent attorneys and patent agents living in the area.
“The current backlog of patent applications delays the commercialization of American innovation and the creation of new jobs and economic growth,” Locke said. “Recruiting and retaining top patent examiners from across the country is an integral part of reducing the backlog. We’re very excited to bring the first ever satellite office of our nation’s innovation agency to one of the country’s most important innovation centers—the city of Detroit.” (USPTO’s website, Press Release 10-65).
The USPTO will continue to search for more satellite locations throughout the nation, working with employees and shareholders, in order to locate the best locations possible to help the application process run more efficiently.