PKI Deadline Postponed

Important update: The deadlines related to authentication change and migration for EFS-Web and Private PAIR are being extended due to technical issues. We will announce the new deadlines when they are determined. Until then, you can still authenticate using either USPTO.gov accounts or PKI certificates.

Getting Started - New Users

The Patent Electronic Business Center (EBC) is the USPTO Patents support organization that provides customer support for patent application electronic filing and other e-commerce matters not related to substantive patent prosecution or legal issues. These include but are not limited to customer submission and access issues as well as general assistance with the various Patent Electronic Systems. Systems that are supported include EFS-Web, Public and Private PAIR, and Patent Center. The EBC also supports the PatentIn and Checker tools. The EBC also issues, administers, and supports the use of customer numbers and verified USPTO.gov accounts for the access and use of the Patent Electronic Systems. The hours of operations of the EBC are Monday through Friday 6 a.m. - midnight (EST/EDT). The EBC can be reached by telephone at 866-217-9197 (toll free) or 571-272-4100. The EBC can be reached by email at ebc@uspto.gov.

Customers seeking to access and use the USPTO's Patent Electronic Systems may do as either non-registered or registered users. Customers may obtain registered status by first creating a USPTO.gov account when submitting the Patent Electronic Verification Form for access and use of the Patent Electronic Systems. Registration allows EFS-WEB users the ability to electronically save materials being created for submission and to file follow-on materials. A customer number and verified USPTO.gov account enables Private PAIR customers to review the status of their unpublished submissions and to track their patent applications online.

* If you were a Digital Certificate holder and you have migrated your PKI to a USPTO.gov account using the Migration Tool, you now have a registered USPTO.gov account.  There is no need to submit the new verification form unless you have a name change or need to update your USPTO.gov account email address.

* When registering your USPTO.gov account, please ensure your USPTO.gov account name matches the name entered in the form to minimize processing delays.

The following document, the EBC Welcome Wagon, provides a detailed overview of the services that the EBC provides to its customers.

EBC Welcome Wagon (PDF)

To become a registered user of the USPTO's Electronic Filing System (EFS-Web) and Patent Application Information Retrieval (PAIR) system, several pieces of information must be collected to assure that you and only you have access to your data. This page describes the steps you must perform to help us connect you to your data.

 

1. Obtain a Customer Number

  • Apply for a Customer Number

A Customer Number allows you to easily correlate all your filings and correspondence with a single mailing address, eliminating typographical errors or variations in addresses that can make it difficult to correspond with the USPTO. This Customer Number will also ensure that only you can access your patent application information.

To get your unique Customer Number, please download and complete the

Customer Number Request form [PDF] and fax it to the Electronic Business Center at 571-273-0177.

* If you are a registered attorney or patent agent, or a person granted limited recognition, then your registration number or limited recognition number must be associated with your Customer Number. This is accomplished by adding your registration number to the Customer Number Request form.

Practitioners are reminded that they must also notify the OED of any changes to their contact information within 30 days of the date of the change. See 37 C.F.R. § 11.11(a). More information is available at: http://www.uspto.gov/ip/boards/oed/index.jsp.

  • Update a Customer Number

If you are currently a registered Private PAIR user, you can update any existing customer number you have access to in real time by first authenticating, then selecting PAIR Administration, then View Customer Number Details. 

If you already have a Customer Number and you would like to update the information associated with that number, please download and complete the

Customer Number Data Change form [PDF] and fax it to the Electronic Business Center at 571-273-0177.

* This may be useful to attorneys changing firms or organizations that are reorganizing the management of a group of patents.

  • Associate Existing Patent Applications to a Customer Number

If you do not have any applications on file with the USPTO, please skip to step 2. However, if you already have patent applications on file with the USPTO, you need to associate these applications with your Customer Number.

To associate existing patent applications to a Customer Number, please download and complete the

Customer Number Upload Spreadsheet [MS Excel]

This information can be sent on a CD or USB memory stick to:

Mail Stop EBC Customer Number
Commissioner for Patents
P.O. Box 1450
Alexandria, VA 22313-1450

One can additionally file a change of correspondence address form PTO/AIA/122 or PTO/SB122 to an individual application to change the correspondence address to a customer number.

* To associate a PCT application in the International phase with a Customer Number for purposes of viewing the PCT application in Private PAIR, please download and complete the

Request to Update a PCT Application with a Customer Number form [MS Word] and fax it to the Electronic Business Center at 571-273-0177.

2. Obtain a Verified USPTO.gov Account - New Verification Process

The Patent Electronic System uses the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) single sign-on (SSO) system, the USPTO.gov account, for secure two-factor authentication. USPTO.gov accounts are based on email address, and each account uses the email address as the account name or user ID. When you opt in to two-step authentication, you will receive a one-time verification code delivered by email, mobile device, or phone call to grant access to the Patent Electronic Systems.  To obtain a verified USPTO.gov account is a simple two-step process.

  • Step 1 - Apply for a USPTO.gov account

USPTO.gov accounts can be created and managed through the MyUSPTO homepage. The MyUSPTO page allows users to create accounts, change passwords, enable two-step authentication, and record personal information, including alternate email addresses and telephone numbers. This information will be used to uniquely identify you and allow secure access to your patent data. If you need any assistance creating your USPTO.gov account, please call the USPTO Contact Center (UCC) at 800-786-9199.

Please note, when creating the USPTO.gov account, enter your complete legal name, including first name, middle name (not initial) and last name and use this same name when submitting the Patent Electronic Verification Form.  Complete legal names must be provided to avoid confusion between people having the same first name, middle initial and last name.  

* Please note, for registered practitioners or practitioners granted limited recognition, the name provided must correspond to Office of Enrollment and Discipline records.

Please note, when creating the USPTO.gov account, you must opt in two-step authentication to access EFS-WEB and Private PAIR.  If the EBC determines that you have not selected two-step authentication when they are processing the Patent Electronic System Verification form, they will opt you in.  The default delivery method of the authentication code will be email notification. 

To assure the security of your data, follow the policy described in the Patent Electronic System Access Document and Patent Electronic System Subscriber Agreement.

Patent Electronic System Access Document [PDF]

Patent Electronic System Subscriber Agreement [PDF]

  • Step 2 - Register the USPTO.gov account

Now that you have obtained a Customer Number, created a USPTO.gov account, and read the Patent Electronic System Access Document and Patent Electronic System Subscriber Agreement, you can download and complete the Patent Electronic Verification Form.

* Please note, the name listed on the USPTO.gov account and on the Patent Electronic Verification form must match.  In order to minimize form processing time, please ensure the USPTO.gov account name matches the name listed on the form.  If the names do not match, the EBC will contact you so that you can modify the USPTO.gov account name to match the name listed on the submitted form.

Patent Electronic Verification Form [PDF] Updated 2/19/19

Complete the Patent Electronic Verification Form and have it notarized by a notary and mail the original form (no faxes or copies) to:

Mail Stop EBC Customer Number
Commissioner for Patents
P.O. Box 1450
Alexandria, VA 22313-1450

* Patent Electronic Verification Form Instructions [PDF] Updated 2/19/19

3. Digital Certificate Management Support

Beginning January 18, 2019, the PKI Certificate Action form will no longer be made available for download. Certificate Action Form requests for new PKIs and EBC-assisted PKI recoveries postmarked prior to Jan 28, will be processed. The USPTO is moving from using PKI certificates for two-factor authentication because the software will no longer be supported.  Usage of the Digital Certificate and Digital Certificate Management Support tool including self-recovery codes will continue until further notice. If you need to create a new registered account, you will need to submit the Patent Electronic Verification Form to register again.

  • Digital Certificate Management

Usage of the Digital Certificate Management tool will including self-recovery codes will continue until further notice.  

Use the Digital Certificate Management site to manage your digital certificate contact information, create a set of recovery codes and to perform self-recovery of damaged or lost digital certificates online.