The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published a final rule in the Federal Register on August 3, 2020, that includes a fee for patent applications that are not filed in the DOCX format. The fee only applies to non-provisional utility applications and not to design, plant, or provisional applications.
The effective date of this new fee was most recently delayed in a final rule published in the Federal Register on December 29, 2022 and was scheduled to become effective on April 3, 2023. Through a new final rule, the USPTO is delaying the effective date of this fee until June 30, 2023.
The USPTO is committed to ensuring a successful and smooth transition to the DOCX format for patent applicants. You can find the full text of the final rule in the Federal Register and on the USPTO’s Patent Related Notices webpage