The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office ("USPTO") has revised its Application Data Sheet (ADS) form PTO/AIA/14 which is now posted on the USPTO patents forms page for submission on or after November 30, 2015. The changes to the ADS form were announced in the Federal Register. See Changes to Facilitate Applicant’s Authorization of Access to Unpublished U.S. Patent Applications by Foreign Intellectual Property Offices (October 27, 2015).
Accordingly, patent applicants are no longer required to select an opt-in check box on the ADS form to provide the USPTO with authorization to permit a foreign intellectual property office participating in the priority document exchange (PDX) program access to a U.S. priority application. Instead, the revised ADS form contains by default the authorization to permit access to the U.S. priority application via the PDX program. Including a properly signed ADS form on filing will provide applicant’s authorization for the PDX program. Should an applicant wish not to provide authorization for the PDX program, the applicant can select the opt-out check box for this authorization on the ADS form. The revised ADS form also contains by default the authorization to permit access to the search results from a U.S. priority application by the European Patent Office (EPO). Like the PDX program, should an applicant wish not to provide the EPO access to the search results, the applicant can select the opt-out check box for this authorization on the ADS form.
Please note that a revised ADS form submitted after the filing of an application CANNOT be used to provide or revoke any of the authorizations to permit access discussed above. Instead, forms PTO/SB/39 and PTO/SB/69, as applicable, should be used to provide or revoke these authorizations to permit access after the filing of an application.