American Innovators for Patent Reform Urges Adoption of American Invents Act (H.R. 1249) Amendment that Will End Fee Diversion

Amendment by Reps. Conyers, Sensenbrenner and Manzullo Will Establish Full Funding for U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

New York, N.Y. – June 21, 2011 – American Innovators for Patent Reform (AIPR) supports the Conyers/Sensenbrenner/Manzullo amendment to H.R. 1249 (the “America Invents Act”) currently before the House of Representatives. The amendment would end fee division and establish full funding for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), enabling the agency to keep all fees it collects. AIPR urges all members of the House to vote in favor of the amendment when H.R. 1249 comes to the floor for a vote, probably this week.

AIPR has always supported full funding of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). As an agency that uses no taxpayer dollars, but is funded solely from fees it collects from patent and trademark applicants and assignees (and petition filers and others), the USPTO should be able to keep all fees it collects to fund the agency’s operations. Congress has been giving the USPTO a budget each year that has been substantially less than what the agency collects in fees, with the overage going to the U.S. Treasury in a practice known as “fee diversion.” The Conyers/Sensenbrenner/Manzullo amendment would end fee diversion, and enable the USPTO to keep all fees it collects subject to Congressional oversight.

"Diverting fees that the Patent Office collects from inventors and patent applicants is nothing short of a tax on innovation," says Alexander Poltorak, AIPR's founder and President. "Permanently ending fee diversion should be a core feature of any patent reform."

AIPR has written a letter that supporters of full funding for the USPTO can send to their Congressmen and Congresswomen.

“We urge all supporters of America’s unique role as the global leader in innovation to cut and paste our letter into an e-mail to their U.S. Representative,” explains Alec Schibanoff, Executive Director of American Innovators for Patent Reform. “Time is short,” he continues, “as H.R. 1249 is scheduled to come before the House this week!”

American Innovators for Patent Reform urges supporters to go to and enter their zip code. The website will return the name and contact information for the user’s U.S. Representative and two U.S. Senators. Since the bill is coming up before the House, the immediate concern is to contact all House members. Supporters can then cut and paste the AIPR letter into an e-mail, and send it to their U.S. Representative. AIPR suggests putting “Urgent - H.R. 1249” in the subject line of the e-mail.