By Marc Albert Robinson
| December 20, 2013
The Patent Law Treaties Implementation Act of 2012 has resulted in new rules being proposed for implementing the Act. 

On October 21, 2013, 78 FR 62367 was published as a final rule to implement the Patent Law Treaty, which generally does not affect design patents, but does provide restoring the right of priority after the 6-month period to claim priority, within 2 months from the expiration of the 6-month period and upon grant of a petition that shows the delay was unintentional.

On November 29, 2013, 78 FR 71869 was published as a proposed rule to implement the Hague Agreement.  Of note, according to the proposed rule:

  1. an international design application is a "national application" or a "nonprovisional application" under 37 CFR 1.9;
  2. an international design application can include two or more designs, but there is a requirement for only one independent and distinct design - 37 CFR 1.1021 and 1.1064;
  3. a CPA cannotbe filed in an international design application under 37 CFR 1.53;
  4. an international design application will typically publish at 6 months from filing/registration, but publication can be deferred or immediate publication can be requested; and
  5. the publication of the international design application will trigger access to an unpublished application (i.e., an unpublished/unexamined US design application related to the international design application) - 37 CFR 1.14.
The comment deadline date for providing written comments regarding the proposed rules is January 28, 2014.