Cassandra L. Wilkinson
USPTO Opens Dallas Regional Office
The USPTO opened its Regional Office in Dallas, Texas on November 9, 2015. The Texas Regional Office, located in the Terminal Annex Federal Building, is the last of four regional offices opened by the USPTO since 2012 and will serve the Southwestern region of the United States including Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas.
Hope Shimabuku will be the first Director of the Texas Regional Office and is expected to take her post in January.
The Texas Regional Office will provide services for searching patents and trademarks and will offer training and workshops for various experience levels. The Office also has interview rooms for applicants to connect with patent examiners, as well as a hearing room for PTAB proceedings.
Having a regional office in Dallas will be great for applicants in Oklahoma as they will no longer have to travel all the way to Washington, D.C. to meet with patent examiners or attend appeal proceedings. This can be a huge savings to an applicant who finds it necessary to meet with an Examiner directly in order to overcome a rejection of his or her application.
If you are not filing electronically, it should be noted that paper filings must still be sent to the USPTO's Alexandria, Virginia address, not to any Regional Office. If you do not send it to the USPTO Alexandria address, your filing date will be the date that the USPTO receives the document, not the date it was deposited with the U.S. Postal Service.