Archives for March 2020

March 25, 2020 Coronavirus Update: Changes to OLIFF Communication Procedures

Oliff PLC continues to adjust its operating procedures to support our clients as more and more of our staff and attorneys move to remote telework.  To help facilitate this shift to remote telework, and to prepare for the possibility of a government mandated partial or full closure of our offices, we are moving quickly to a more digital environment.

Effective March 26, we plan to eliminate mailing most hardcopy correspondence and documents as the default procedure for our clients.  During this time, our default procedure will be to send all client correspondence, USPTO correspondence, and invoices by email.  For clients that have specified another mode of electronic transmission, such as facsimile or secure uploads, we will continue to upload documents and correspondence in the specified manner.  For clients that have expressly requested to receive hardcopies by mail, we will continue to send hardcopies for as long as we are able to have a sufficient number of our employees working in our office.

We will continue to mail original documents, such as Letters Patents, for as long as possible.  To the extent it becomes necessary to fully close our offices, we will temporarily transition to sending all mail correspondence to email only correspondence, and will retain original documents until our employees can safely return to the office, when we will resume mailings.

Please do not hesitate to contact us with questions or to discuss any particular situations that may be impacted by this change in procedure.  Please direct any such questions or inquiries to Megan Bowers at mbowers@oliff.com.

March 19, 2020 Coronavirus Update: Changes to OLIFF Business Hours

OLIFF PLC continues to monitor the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in the U.S. and around the world, and we are adjusting our operations accordingly.  Our office remains open and our firm is fully operational.

We are in the process of moving many of our attorneys and staff to remote teleworking as a precautionary measure and to accommodate individual employee needs, such as caring for children that are now out of school or daycare.  We are also adjusting our office hours slightly. Starting March 23, our regular business hours will be 8:30 am to 5:00 pm, Eastern Daylight Time.

We are fully committed to the needs of our clients and to maintaining our standards for prompt, high quality legal services during this difficult time.  We are implementing a variety of internal procedures to accommodate teleworking employees and adjust our workflow accordingly. We remain very confident in our ability to continue delivering high quality legal services without interruption and with no impact to our clients.

As reported in our last update, all scheduled Examiner interviews, PTAB and TTAB oral hearings and other in-person meetings must take place remotely by video or telephone conference.  The USPTO has also enacted special procedures for reviving applications that are unintentionally abandoned due to the effects of the coronavirus outbreak, including waiving the petition fee.  Otherwise, the USPTO has given no indication that it plans any closures or deferral of due dates.

We will provide further updates, as necessary.  In the meantime, please rest assured that OLIFF PLC will continue to timely handle IP matters for all its clients, and we will do whatever we can to assist our clients during this unusual and difficult time.

March 13, 2020 Coronavirus Update: Initial Response

OLIFF PLC is actively monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in the U.S. and around the world.

We are committed to the health and safety of our attorneys and staff, and we are exercising appropriate measures of caution that are recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization.  We also remain focused on our clients and to maintaining our standards for prompt, high quality legal services during this difficult time.

Currently, our offices remain open and fully operational.  However, should there be a need for our firm to temporarily close any of its offices, we are taking the necessary steps to ensure that our professionals and staff are equipped to work remotely and handle all of our client’s legal matters.  We are confident in our ability to deliver those services without interruption.

At this time, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has given no indication that it plans any closures.  As many of you know, the USPTO is well-equipped for its employees to telework, and thus we expect the USPTO will continue to operate with limited disruptions.  There was an announcement from the USPTO today indicating that, until further notice, all scheduled Examiner interviews, PTAB and TTAB oral hearings and other in-person meetings must take place remotely by video or telephone conference.

We will provide further updates, as necessary.  In the meantime, please rest assured that OLIFF PLC will continue to timely handle IP matters for all its clients, and we will do whatever we can to assist our clients during this unusual and difficult time.