It hasn’t been since Thomas Jefferson opened the first patent office that there’s been a patent office outside of the confines of Washington. With the annoucement of regional patent offices, that has all changed. Today the Denver Patent Office officially opens. It has been a ten year ordeal, with too many politics to mention. Last night Senator Michael Bennett had a reception at his home to honor the event. Attending were: Bruce Andrews, Chief of Staff to Commerce Secretary Pritzker and the Deputy Secretary nominee; Michelle Lee, Acting Director and Deputy Director of the USPTO. Also, Governor John Hickenlooper made a special visit. I’ve been practicing patent law in Denver since 1995, and it was a great honor to be invited and participate in this event.
About 400 patent examiners will soon be hired and trained in the Denver patent office. Denver inventors won’t necessarily be assigned to an examiner in Denver, but it is hoped the technology areas will match up so at least there is a reasonable chance of getting assigned to a local examiner. Aslo, Senator Bennett said he wanted to eliminate examiner turnover so an application will have the same examiner from start to finish. He also estimated the impact on the Denver economy to be substantial.