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On December 7, 2020, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the Mexican Institute of Industrial Property (IMPI) announced the launch of the Parallel Patent Grant (PPG) initiative.  The PPG initiative is in the form of a work sharing agreement between the two offices, allowing applicants to expedite the grant of a Mexican patent provided that a corresponding patent has already granted in the U.S.

For an application to be eligible under the PPG initiative, both the Mexican and corresponding U.S. applications must share the same priority date.  Applicants who have a granted U.S. patent can utilize the PPG initiative by simply submitting a request to IMPI.   According to IMPI, approximately 11,000 patent applications filed between 2015 and 2018 may benefit from the PPG initiative.

The introduction of the PPG initiative is a result of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Technical and Strategic Collaboration signed by both offices on January 28, 2020.  Under the terms of the MoU, a parallel patent grant framework was instituted which allowed IMPI to leverage search and examination results from the USPTO when issuing a counterpart Mexican patent.  Since the signing of the MoU, the USPTO and IMPI have tested the PPG on around 200 applications.

The USPTO and IMPI have a long history of work sharing cooperation.  This includes the Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) program has been implemented since 2011.

This post was written by Lisa Mueller.

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