USPTO Proposes Increase to Trademark Fees

The United States Patent and Trademark Office recently released a new plan outlining its proposed changes to trademark filing fees. 

The proposed plan includes an increase to many of the most common fees associated with trademarks. If approved, the plan can be expected to raise fees by November 2024. 

What fees are being raised?

While fees are being raised across the board, some of the most significant changes are coming to new trademark applications. For example, the basic application fee to file a trademark would be raised from $250 to $350. Additionally, in some cases, the fee to file an application could cost upwards of $550 per class. 

The USPTO also plans to increase fees associated with Amendment to Allege Use and Statement of Use filings (increased to $200 and $150, respectively.) Late-stage Statement of Use extensions will also now cost more per class, with fourth and subsequent filings now costing $250 per class.

Other increases can be found in fees associated with the Madrid Protocol (now $300 per class,) custom goods & services categories (now $200 per class,) and various renewal filings. One of the largest price hikes announced is for filing Letters of Protest, jumping from $50 to $250.

Fee Category Description Current Fee Proposed Fee Dollar Change Percent Change
Application Filings Basic application, per class $250 $350 $100 40%
Application Filings Fee for insufficient information, per class n/a $100 n/a n/a
Application Filings Fee for using goods and services identifications not contained in Trademark Next Generation ID Manual (using the free-form text box), per class n/a $200 n/a n/a
Application Filings For each additional 1,000 characters in excess of 1,000, per class n/a $200 n/a n/a
Intent to use/Use fees Amendment to allege use (AAU), per class $100 $200 $100 100%
Intent to use/Use fees Statement of use (SOU), per class $100 $150 $50 50%
Intent to use/Use fees Request for six-month extension for filing an SOU, per class $125 n/a n/a n/a
Intent to use/Use fees Fourth and subsequent request for six-month extension for filing an SOU, per class n/a $250 $125 100%
Trademark Processing fees Petition to the Director $250 $400 $150 60%
Trademark Processing fees Petition to revive an application $150 $250 $100 67%
Trademark Processing fees Letter of Protest $50 $250 $200 400%
Maintaining Exclusive Rights §9 registration renewal application, per class $300 $350 $50 17%
Maintaining Exclusive Rights §8 declaration, per class $225 $300 $75 33%
Maintaining Exclusive Rights §15 declaration, per class $200 $250 $50 25%
Madrid Protocol fees §71 declaration, per class $225 $300 $75 33%

Why is the USPTO raising fees?

It seems that the USPTO is raising the cost of fees in an attempt to address the “bad filing behavior” that has been clogging up the USPTO over the past few years. It currently takes an estimated 15-18 months for the USPTO to grant the registration of a trademark. This backlog comes from years in which the trademark agency was besieged with applications from China-based businesses. Many of these applications are poorly drafted and even fraudulent (containing photoshopped trademark specimens and false claims).

As such, it appears that the USPTO is introducing these new fees to help curb poorly filed trademark applications. A $100 fee will be charged per class on any application that does not provide “sufficient” information (without any context given as to what qualifies as “sufficient” information.) 

Additionally, a $200 fee will be charged per class on applications that exceed 1,000 characters in the goods & services section. This means that a trademark applicant will be charged an extra $200 for every additional 1,000 characters after the first 1,000. 

While large companies may not bat an eye at an extra hundred dollars here and there, these fee increases will hit small businesses particularly hard. The increased fees may deter some small business owners from filing trademark applications at all and others from not protecting their trademark for all the goods and services necessary.

One of the more interesting aspects of the USPTO raising all these fees is the fact that the USPTO is an entirely self-funded agency. It is not funded with taxpayer dollars, but rather with its application filing fees. 

During this time of economic uncertainty, it may make sense to some for the USPTO to raise its fees and ensure financial stability for the agency for years to come. In fact, one of the reasons the USPTO is likely raising fees is because it is predicting a budget shortfall in the years to come. However, at the end of 2022, the USPTO had a $200+ million operating reserve (well above the ~$120 million minimum operating reserve level.)

Should the USPTO be putting that reserve to use to keep trademark filing fees lower for small business owners?

At the very least our firm is advocating that the USPTO allow businesses with less than $5 million in annual revenue to file trademark applications with lower filing fees.

Eric Perrott, Esq.

Eric Perrott, Esq. is a trademark and copyright attorney committed to providing high-quality legal services for any sized budget. Eric’s ability to counsel clients through any stage of trademark and copyright development and protection allows him to provide his clients with personalized advice and unique analysis. Eric can be reached directly at: The contents of this blog are for informational purposes only and may not be relied on as legal advice.

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