AIPLA Submits Joint Letter to House of Representatives Expressing Concern Regarding Resource Appropriation for USPTO

Written December 6, 2021

On December 1, 2021, the American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA) and the Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO) submitted a joint letter to House Committee members Chair DeLauro, Ranking Member Granger, Chair Cartwright, and Ranking Member Aderholt expressing concern regarding resources appropriated to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) in FY 2022. It is noted that the House Appropriations Committee approved a bill constraining the USPTO’s spending to $3.994 billion, substantially less than the USPTO’s estimated fee collection of $4.058 billion and a significant departure from the usual practice of giving the USPTO access to all estimated fee collections.

The joint letter urged the House to pass a funding measure that reflects the intent of the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act to fund the USPTO at a level equal to fee collection estimates, noting that Congress has followed its intent faithfully for the decade since its passage. Concerning FY2022, it is mentioned with optimism that the Senate Appropriations Committee is considering a bill that would fully fund the USPTO at $4.058 billion.

The letter asserted that the USPTO should have full access to all the user fees it collects to support its efforts to improve quality, enhance technology, and appropriately hire needed personnel, each of which benefits the entire IP ecosystem. Further, it is made clear that the IP system is critical to the U.S. economy and contributes as a foundation for U.S. leadership in innovation and technological advancement.

To read the full letter, please download the file.