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Tools Representing Patent Maintenance Fees

Patent Maintenance Fees

Once a utility patent issues, it must be maintained at the United States Patent and Trademark Office in order to remain enforce and not go abandoned. Design patents and plant patents do not require maintenance at the USPTO.

What Are Patent Maintenance Fees?

Patent maintenance fees are fees you simply must pay to the United State Patent and Trademark Office in order for your patent to remain enforce. Not paying the patent maintenance fees will lead to abandonment of your patent and you will not be able to enforce your patent against others. To maintain your utility patent, you must pay the maintenance fees during the following time intervals: 3 to 3.5 years, 7 to 7.5 years, and 11 to 11.5 years after the date of issue. You must pay the maintenance fees during these time intervals and cannot pay early. Payments may be made up to six months after the due date of any given maintenance fee, but a surcharge will be applied. After this six month "grace period", the patent will go abandoned if no payment has been made. Below is a list of current patent maintenance fees.  

A List of Current Patent Maintenance Fees

1. Patent Maintenance Fees (Timely Payments)​​

Patent Maintenance Fees            Due Date            Large Entity            Small Entity            Micro Entity

1st Maintenance Fee

2nd Maintenance Fee

3rd Maintenance Fee

3.5 Years*

7.5 Years*

11.5 Years*










*From the Date of Issue. Patent Maintenance Fees may be paid up to six month in advance of the due date, but no earlier. 

2. Patent Maintenance Fees (Late Payments)

Late Surcharge                                Due Date            Large Entity            Small Entity            Micro Entity

Surcharge (Late on 1st Fee)

Surcharge (Late on 2nd Fee)

Surcharge (Late on 3rd Fee)

4 Years*

8 Years*

12 Years*










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(650) 285-1799


Colorado & Eastern Utah........

(801) 753-9055

(435) 650-8019


For answers to questions or for counseling, please contact our office. The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.

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*The surcharge must be paid within six months from the due date of the original maintenance fee.

3. Revival If Maintenance Fees Were Never Made

If you have forgotten to pay the maintenance fee even within the grace period, then you may still be able to pay the maintenance fee by submitting a petition to revive stating the the non-payment was unintentional. To revive the application, the maintenance fee, surcharge, and additional revival fee must be payed. The revival fees required are as follows: 

Revival Fee                                       Due Date            Large Entity            Small Entity            Micro Entity

After Expiration (Unintentional)





*A petition to revive for unintentional missed payments may be filed anytime during the term of the patent. 

More information on patent maintenance fees and other fees required by the patent office are listed on the United States Patent and Trademark Office Fee Schedule

Why does the Patent Office Require Patent Maintenance Fees?

While it is true that the USPTO profits from patent maintenance fees, there are other policy reasons why patent maintenance fees exist. For example, once a patent abandons or expires, it goes to the public domain. This means that the patent owner can no longer exclude others from making, using, or selling, the subject matter of the abandoned or expired patent. Thus, the policy behind the maintenance fee is that patent owners who are still using and benefiting from the exclusion rights granted by their patents will maintain their patents by paying the required maintenance fees, while patent owners who have lost interest or no longer want the rights granted by their patent will not pay the patent maintenance fees and thus the public will be able to enjoy the benefits of the patented inventions that have gone abandoned. Simply put, maintenance fees are a way to weed out patents that are no longer being used and to give them to the public. 

Contact Our Attorneys Today To Begin Your Patent Protection

Our patent attorneys are ready to listen to you and to tailor a unique plan that fits your needs and grants you the greatest degree of protection at an affordable price. We offer a flat-fee quotes and hourly rates depending on our clients' unique situations, needs, and goals. If you are ready to begin your patent protection or have questions about the patent process, call us today or fill out our message form.   


(650) 285-1799


(801) 753-9055

(435) 650-8019

Colorado & Eastern Utah

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