Indian Patent Office (IPO) by the order of Ministry of Home Affairs dated 15th April, 2020, started functioning from April 20, 2020 with a full staff of the rank of Deputy Controller and above and one-third staff strength up to the rank of Assistant Controller on all workings days. The Patent Office during this period is issuing first examination reports, foreign filing licenses, orders in relation to pending applications, etc.
However, in view of the ongoing lockdown in the country, IPO shall not be accessible to the public (in person) until 3rd May, 2020.
Accordingly, all deadlines and timelines prescribed under the IP Acts and Rules that fall during the lockdown period have been automatically extended to the date on which offices re-open i.e. 4th May, 2020.
If for some reason, the applicants are unable to meet the timeline of 4th May 2020, they can avail of condonation of delay of one month from 3rd May 2020 under Rule 6(6) of the Patent Rules, 2003.
According to Rule 6(6) of the Patents Rule, 2003, the Controller may condone the delay in transmitting or resubmitting a document to the patent office or performing any act by a party, if a petition for such condonation of delay along with a statement regarding circumstances of the fact and evidence to support the said statement is made that the delay was on account of the pandemic that was of such a situation that disrupted normal communication,
Be safe, Stay safe!