T.M.E.P. § 202.03
Filing Fee for At Least One Class of Goods or Services
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202.03 Filing Fee for At Least One Class of Goods or Services
Under 37 C.F.R. 2.21(a)(5), in an application under §1 or §44 of the Trademark Act, the applicant must pay the filing fee for at least one class of goods or services before an application can be given a filing date. The fee can be paid by credit card, check, money order, electronic funds transfer ("EFT"), or by an authorization to charge a deposit account. 37 C.F.R. 2.207. See TMEP §§405 et seq. for additional information about fees.
The amount of the trademark application filing fee varies depending whether the application is filed through TEAS or on paper. It is less expensive to file through TEAS. See notice at 70 Fed. Reg. 2952 (Jan. 19, 2005). The current fee schedule is available on the USPTO website at http://www.uspto.gov.
The complete fee for at least a single class must be submitted with the application as filed. Partial or piecemeal fee payments are unacceptable and will be refunded.
If an application does not include a filing fee for at least a single class, the USPTO will deny a filing date. In re Buckhead Marketing & Distribution, Inc., 71 USPQ2d 1620 (Dir USPTO 2004); In re Paulsen, 35 USPQ2d 1638 (Comm'r Pats. 1995). If a filing date has been granted when the USPTO discovers that the applicant has not paid the filing fee for at least a single class, the filing date will be cancelled. See TMEP §204.01.
The filing fee for a §66(a) application will be sent to the USPTO by the IB, pursuant to Article 8 of the Madrid Protocol. Generally, the examining attorney should not require additional fees during examination. See TMEP §§1904 et seq. for further information about §66(a) applications.
202.03(a) Fee Payment Refused or Charged Back By Financial Institution
Where a check submitted as payment of an application filing fee is returned to the USPTO unpaid, or an EFT or credit card payment is refused or charged back by a financial institution, the application is treated as though the fee had never been paid.
If the original application was accompanied by an authorization to charge fee deficiencies to a deposit account (37 C.F.R. 2.208), then the application filing fee and the $50 processing fee required by 37 C.F.R. 2.6(b)(12) (see TMEP §§202.03(a)(i) and 405.06) are charged to the deposit account, and the original filing date remains unchanged.
However, if the original application was not accompanied by an authorization to charge deficient fees to a deposit account, and the applicant has not paid the filing fee for at least one class of goods or services, the filing date is void and will be cancelled. In re Paulsen, 35 USPQ2d 1638 (Comm'r Pats. 1995).
In some cases, the applicant will have resubmitted the fee before the USPTO discovers that the payment was refused. In these cases, the USPTO will change the filing date to the date when the fee for a single class of goods or services was resubmitted.
In a multi-class application, if the fee for at least a single class has been paid, but the payment of the filing fee for additional class(es) is refused, the filing date of the application is not affected. The applicant must (1) resubmit the fee for the additional class(es), or delete the additional class(es); and (2) pay the $50 processing fee required by 37 C.F.R. 2.6(b)(12). The applicant must pay the processing fee even if the applicant chooses to delete the additional class(es).
See TMEP §§202.03(a)(i) and 405.06 regarding payments refused by financial institutions, and TMEP §204.03 regarding the examining attorney's handling of applications that are erroneously granted a filing date.
202.03(a)(i) Processing Fee for Payment Refused or Charged Back By Financial InstitutionUnder 37 C.F.R. 2.6(b)(12), there is a $50 fee for processing any payment refused (including a check returned unpaid) or charged back by a financial institution. See TMEP §405.06. However, this is not a filing date requirement. If an applicant resubmits the filing fee without paying the processing fee, the USPTO will give the application a filing date as of the date of resubmission, and the examining attorney will require submission of the processing fee during examination.