The USPTO Provisional Patent Fee

As you prepare to apply for a patent, it is essential that you are aware of any fees that may apply in your situation. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some common USPTO fees and how they could influence your filing costs.

Generally, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) charges two different fees for filing a patent application: a base fee and an additional filing fee based on the number of independent claims.


The cost of securing a patent can vary significantly, depending on many factors. To accurately estimate how much it will cost you to secure a patent, it’s essential to become familiar with the most common factors that influence its price tag.

When considering how much it will cost to protect an invention, one of the primary factors to consider is what type of patent application you file. Utility patent applications typically involve drafting and filing costs between $5,000-$10,000; this includes attorney fees, USPTO filing fee costs and any other legal bills associated with your application.

When filing for a patent, it’s important to consider your invention’s potential market opportunities as these can influence the cost of filing. For instance, if the design patent can be translated into an actual commercial product, then its cost may be higher than pursuing a utility patent.

Another major cost-influencing factor for your invention is competition. If there are numerous other patents and applications related to your idea, this could result in a higher filing fee as it requires more attorney time to assess all these prior art innovations and make decisions about how best to proceed with your application.

Another major cost-influencing factor is the amount of work involved in preparing a patent application. If your invention requires consulting an experienced patent attorney, this may prove to be an expensive step but ultimately beneficial in the long run.

Finally, remember that you will have to pay maintenance fees at regular intervals throughout the duration of your patent. These costs ensure that the patent remains active and safeguards any encompassed invention, which is essential for maintaining intellectual property protection.

The USPTO offers discounts to small business filers and maintainers who meet the definition of a “small entity” under Section 3 of the Small Business Act (i.e., with no more than 500 employees). If you’re uncertain if your organization qualifies for these discounts, consult the Small Business Act for clarification.


The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) offers inventors the chance to file provisional patent applications at a lower cost than standard non-provisional applications. The last adjustment in fees under the AIA occurred in 2013, and these new rates take effect on January 16, 2018.

Inventors may file provisional patent applications for various reasons. They may not yet be ready to submit a utility application, lack enough information about their invention or potential market to make an informed decision on whether to seek patent protection, and lack cash to invest in further developing their idea.

If you are thinking about filing a provisional patent, it is essential to understand the process and potential rewards and drawbacks before beginning. For best results, seek professional guidance from an experienced patent attorney or agent for guidance and assistance.

Filing a provisional application necessitates answering several questions about your invention, such as its description, enablement and priority date. Furthermore, drawings illustrating how your invention functions must be submitted for understanding its workings.

It is essential to answer these questions accurately in order to establish a priority date for any future patent claims related to your invention. Otherwise, any valid patent claims issued could be challenged due to insufficient information included in the provisional application.

The US Patent and Trademark Office (uspto) offers several tools to assist with filing a provisional patent application. These include online guides and forms that guide you through every step of the way.

Once you are ready to begin the filing process, head over to the USPTO website and find a link for their EFS-Web system. Here, you can complete online forms and submit them electronically.

You may also submit the forms to the USPTO via postal service using an appropriate envelope and postage stamps. Be sure to include a self-addressed return postcard along with any documents sent.

The USPTO’s Pro Se Assistance Program is a great resource that can assist you with filing the necessary paperwork for your provisional patent application. Additionally, it offers access to experienced patent attorneys and agents who will guide you throughout the entire process.


The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is a national institution that acts as an archive for open technical data. Dissemination of this knowledge encourages innovation, while simultaneously safeguarding against infringement by others.

To protect the USPTO’s system and promote efficient data exchange, the USPTO needs to regulate patent issuance. This is done through a set of legal requirements known as the “written description” and “enablement” requirements that apply both to provisional applications and utility applications.

These requirements call for the inventor to include a comprehensive description of their invention and provide sufficient material that backs it up. This could include materials such as theses, manuscripts, computer code, laboratory notebooks or other types of documentation; in addition to written disclosure forms or presentations made by the inventor.

It is ideal to provide a comprehensive explanation of how an invention functions and its potential applications. Furthermore, including one or more figures illustrating the invention will be beneficial. These should be numbered and outline its steps-by-step construction with alternative parts that can replace those shown in the figure.

Once an application is filed, it may be subject to certain examination fees. These costs vary based on the invention and are typically due at the time of filing.

In addition to standard fees, the USPTO may impose a fee for non-expedited examination. Typically, non-expedited fees are lower than base fees since they do not allow for additional delays.

Exam fees for non-expedited examinations are typically determined by the number of pages included in documents submitted with an application. For instance, a request for supplemental examination typically consists of six documents: a 21-page journal article, 30-page declaration under 37 CFR 1.132, 2-page invoice or sales receipt, 55-page transcript from audio or video recording and 148-page catalog.


There are multiple ways to obtain your patent. The USPTO provides several options and you could also hire a lawyer for assistance with the procedure; however, keep in mind that patents are not guaranteed. Furthermore, there will be various fees and expenses throughout the duration of the procedure that must be covered.

The initial step in patenting your invention is filing a provisional application. This expeditious procedure can save time and money over filing nonprovisional patent applications, as the documents will already have been drafted by your patent attorney. You have several options for filing this application: online, by post; or having them drafted by someone else if desired.

Once your provisional application is accepted, you can submit a nonprovisional patent application which will be reviewed to verify your invention is novel and non-obvious. Upon successfully defending your claims, you can then pay the issuance fee to secure your patent.

This process can take anywhere from $15,000 to $20,000 before your patent is issued. To ensure a smooth journey, it’s wise to budget ahead for these costs in advance.

In addition to paying the issuance fee, you must also pay other maintenance and surcharges throughout your patent’s lifespan. If these fees aren’t paid on time, your patent will expire.

The USPTO provides discounted patent fees to small businesses and start-ups that meet SS 3 of the Small Business Act and do not employ more than 500 personnel.

A small entity is defined as a corporation, LLC, or partnership that does not have more than 500 employees and is named on no more than four utility patents. Additionally, their gross income must not exceed three times the median household income for the previous year as of when they pay their fee(s).

The USPTO plans to offer this pilot program for 12 months starting September 17, 2020. After receiving feedback from stakeholders and assessing its efficacy, the USPTO may extend or terminate it according to needs.