Federal Register Notice: Administrative updates to the General Requirements Bulletin

by John Roberts on March 23, 2021

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Federal Register Notice: Administrative updates to the General Requirements Bulletin

On March 23, 2021, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published a Federal Register Notice requesting public input on administrative updates to the General Requirements Bulletin (GRB) for admission to the examination for registration to practice in patent cases before the USPTO. These proposed changes would serve to streamline the application process for certain applicants and help bring more qualified practitioners into the patent system.

As explained in the GRB, there are three categories of technical and scientific qualifications that typically make applicants eligible to sit for the registration examination:

  • Category A for specified bachelor’s degrees,
  • Category B for other bachelor’s degrees with technical and scientific training, and
  • Category C for practical engineering or scientific experience.

Based on the USPTO’s ongoing evaluation of the criteria, the USPTO is seeking comments on potentially changing the criteria to:

  • Add common Category B degrees to Category A,
  • Accept advanced degrees (i.e., master’s and doctoral degrees) under Category A, and
  • Accept a combination of core sciences under Category B, Options 2 and 4, so long as one of the core science courses has a lab component.

Comments can be submitted through the Federal eRulemaking Portal at www.regulations.gov. Comments will be accepted through May 22, 2021.

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