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Author Topic: Working for the USPTO  (Read 2413951 times)

two banks of four

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7200 on: 02-14-18 at 01:38 pm »

If you're a federal employee and you voted for the repubtards and president orange julius, you got nobody to blame but yourself.

Even more confounding are those who didn't vote for Trump but voted GOP.  I look at the people who live in Barbara Comstock's district and wonder just wtf those people were thinking.  Lots of feds and contractors, and not to mention many who would lose out with the new tax law once the cuts are phased out.  Clinton actually did well in that district, but they decided Comstock was going to represent their best interests?  Perhaps the cynical feds and contractors affiliated with DoD thought they'd get more opportunities?

Also, at the risk of going even more off tangent, calling him julius is a bit too flattering.  Caligula may be more apt ;)

I thought examiners work as examiners for many years, as it hard to go back to work for the private sector after working a few years as an examiner. What career paths/ jobs are available/suitable for examiners who decide to leave the PTO ?

I know a guy who is a former examiner who is tending a bar in Boston.

What is kind of scary is when an examiner can't hack it, and he has to come back as a contractor, doing things like teaching examiners how to use some new search engine. Kind of like the movie industry, where when the actors get too old, they become extras.

On another note, fewyearsin has got it right. Also, he once mentioned how he likes to suggest words in the claims to make them allowable. If you look at the examiners who have survived and possibly thrived for a long time, that is how they do it. The game of stringing out RCE's like fish on a fishline eventually catches up with the examiner. It is easy to spot on a production sheet, and eventually the examiner will find himself, well, tending a bar.

technically, the PTO collectively tends a bar, and our patrons are members of the bar, so the change in profession may not be as drastic ;)
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abc123

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7201 on: 02-14-18 at 01:51 pm »

Not to mention the large number of attorneys who smell like a walking distillery.
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steelie

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7202 on: 02-14-18 at 01:58 pm »

"I would say about five times per year it can take me at least two days to find a reference."

You may want to consider the possibility that you're doing it all wrong.

Just saying.
First, the kinds of people that struggle at the PTO are likely the kind of people that would struggle anywhere.  Certain time-management and prioritization skills apply cross-discipline.  ALL professionals face regular deadline pressure.  Attorneys, for example, have NON-EXTENDABLE deadlines, unlike examiners who can just take a hit on their DM score, but otherwise are fine to blow deadlines.  Attorneys either have to pay extension fees out of their own pocket, or have to face possible malpractice claims (hint - career ending) for blowing a final deadline.  And what about Doctors?  Oh, I don't feel like operating today, why don't you come in tomorrow AFTER YOU DIE.  Yeah, lots of people have deadline pressure, that's called being a professional.  Comes with the territory.

Second, it is a bad idea to rely on RCEs to meet counts.  The way I was taught, and has served me well, is to always do work as though you have no RCEs coming in, and then when they do come in, they are just gravy, and if you've worked extra hours (which it sounds like you do), then you can claim OT and still meet production.  Win-win!  More money, and less volatility and stress.
Your art is just different.

In my art primaries are around a 20% allowance rate, and juniors are at around 10%.

Trying to get the applicant to put a ton of stuff in the claims is a losing game.

These are the big fortune 50 companies represented by the big law firms.

They know their clients will go 3-5 RCES , no problem.

How do you propose to convince them to terminate prosecution early, when they have all that money to get "the broadest possible claims"?
« Last Edit: 02-14-18 at 02:00 pm by steelie »
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ThomasPaine

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7203 on: 02-14-18 at 03:01 pm »

"These are the big fortune 50 companies represented by the big law firms.

They know their clients will go 3-5 RCES , no problem."

What color is the sky in your world?
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steelie

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7204 on: 02-14-18 at 03:19 pm »

"These are the big fortune 50 companies represented by the big law firms.

They know their clients will go 3-5 RCES , no problem."

What color is the sky in your world?
Believe it or not, that's how it rolls for some units.

A client (present with the attorney) once told me, "we have spent $250,000 so far", when filing the 3rd RCE or 4th RCE (can't remember).
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ThomasPaine

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7205 on: 02-14-18 at 04:17 pm »

I might believe that for one case.  One.  But I doubt that's SOP for any filer, no matter how big.  The biggest filer, IBM, just appeals without RCE's for the most part.

Believe it or not there are budgets for patent prosecution.  I don't believe there's any filer, including Apple or Google or Facebook, that's routinely filing 3-5 RCE's and spending $250K on each application. 

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midwestengineer

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7206 on: 02-14-18 at 05:09 pm »

I might believe that for one case.  One.  But I doubt that's SOP for any filer, no matter how big.  The biggest filer, IBM, just appeals without RCE's for the most part.

Believe it or not there are budgets for patent prosecution.  I don't believe there's any filer, including Apple or Google or Facebook, that's routinely filing 3-5 RCE's and spending $250K on each application.

No kidding.  I can't even imagine the amount of estoppel 3-5 RCEs would generate in addition to the fees.

SOP is one RCE if major new art is being cited in each action and then immediate appeal.

3-5 RCEs sounds like some garbage incoming national phase work on worthless, unenforceable claims.
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steelie

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7207 on: 02-14-18 at 05:37 pm »

I might believe that for one case.  One.  But I doubt that's SOP for any filer, no matter how big.  The biggest filer, IBM, just appeals without RCE's for the most part.
Yeah, IBM is known to be resistant to filing RCEs.

Believe it or not there are budgets for patent prosecution.  I don't believe there's any filer, including Apple or Google or Facebook, that's routinely filing 3-5 RCE's and spending $250K on each application.
However, don't you think most clients that can afford the big law firms, can afford the comparatively tiny PTO fees?

"Large entity fees for 5 RCEs is $8900.
https://www.uspto.gov/learning-and-resources/fees-and-payment/uspto-fee-schedule

I see no resistance to filing RCEs if prosecution is being advanced.

The examiner gets "counts", the attorney gets paid, the client feels like they're on the "yellow brick road".

Everyone is happy.
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MYK

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7208 on: 02-14-18 at 05:52 pm »

If you're a federal employee and you voted for the repubtards and president orange julius, you got nobody to blame but yourself.
Those of us in the private sector, meanwhile, are overjoyed at what he's been doing.
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"The life of a patent solicitor has always been a hard one."  Judge Giles Rich, Application of Ruschig, 379 F.2d 990.

Disclaimer: not only am I not a lawyer, I'm not your lawyer.  Therefore, this does not constitute legal advice.

ThomasPaine

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7209 on: 02-14-18 at 06:08 pm »

"Those of us in the private sector, meanwhile, are overjoyed at what he's been doing."

I'm in the private sector and I'm not overjoyed.  Mostly just embarrassed that we elected a giant toddler as president.
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nsbe22

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7210 on: 02-14-18 at 08:03 pm »

yea 7-10. Looks like I may get a 9 instead...if that change goes through it'll be lower but a negligible difference that I can live with.


Was it a step 8 at least?  If they offered less than a step 8, it may be worth your time to make a quick call and ask them to increase the offer to more closely match your previous salary (they can only do so much, even a step 10 is probably way low for you).  You need evidence (e.g., tax returns) to show your higher previous salary, and they aren't always willing/able to change the offer.

The plus side, if you plan to stay as an examiner and are willing to work hard (or at least work average), you can get a grade increase each year up to GS-13, then 2 years for GS-14, which is pretty quick progression with clearly designated goals for each promotion.  So 5 years from now things may look much better, if you can hold out that long.


Also, to the next poster, the reason I took a huge pay cut was for the stability and for the mid-long run, the 5-10 year period at the office is kind of the sweet spot of good salary, easy(ish) job, and lots of flexibility and guaranteed time off.  It's a life decision more than a career decision.  Honestly, the first couple years I had so much free time outside of work I didn't know what to do with myself for a while.  It's so easy at some jobs to get caught up in working all the time that you forget that these are the best/healthiest years of your life, and you don't actually have to spend them as a 24/7 slave to your job.  The PTO pays enough to live on, though you'll never be rich.  C'est la vie.
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MYK

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7211 on: 02-14-18 at 08:34 pm »

I'm in the private sector and I'm not overjoyed.  Mostly just embarrassed that we elected a giant toddler as president.
Well, you've got another seven years left to embrace the winning.  I'll keep thinking positive thoughts for ya. :)
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"The life of a patent solicitor has always been a hard one."  Judge Giles Rich, Application of Ruschig, 379 F.2d 990.

Disclaimer: not only am I not a lawyer, I'm not your lawyer.  Therefore, this does not constitute legal advice.

snapshot

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7212 on: 02-14-18 at 09:16 pm »

yea 7-10. Looks like I may get a 9 instead...if that change goes through it'll be lower but a negligible difference that I can live with.

Just be aware that your production quota will be higher starting as a 9 than it will be as a 7.
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steelie

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7213 on: 02-15-18 at 12:34 pm »

In other news, the administration trots out its ransom note again:
Also, elimination of the FERS pension for anyone with less than 5 working years.

"Eliminate FERS contributions for Federal employees with fewer than five years of service. Instead, they would receive a lump sum benefit of contributions they have made to FERS and receive an additional 3 percentage points in automatic TSP contributions. This would make them eligible to receive up to 8 percent in total government contributions"
https://www.fedsmith.com/2018/02/09/changes-federal-employees-coming-workplace/
Which is an absolute ripoff for the Feds.  Take away a benefit worth about 10% of their salary, and give them an extra 3%, and tell them that it is all roughly equal.

But again we all know that it's a ruse to get rid of any competent government workers, so then they can say "hey, our government workers suck, let's hire all this work out to our contractor friends!"  So the end game is reduced services at astronomically higher prices.  Yay for average Joe taxpayer!
It's already bizzare that examiners hired after 2014 make 3.6% less pay (because the pension contribution changed from .8% to 4.4%).

That's close to an after tax 110 production bonus.
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lazyexaminer

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Re: Working for the USPTO
« Reply #7214 on: 02-15-18 at 01:56 pm »

It's already bizzare that examiners hired after 2014 make 3.6% less pay (because the pension contribution changed from .8% to 4.4%).

That's close to an after tax 110 production bonus.

I don't think it's that strange because there have always been CSRS folks around whose pension contributions and end results will be vastly different. At least those people hired after 2014 knew what they were getting into when they signed on.

Changing the pension output for people mid career (if it comes to that) is just a shitty bait and switch. They might as well claw back all the TSP matching contributions they've made too. I realize that this is often just how it is these days, but I don't have to be happy about the possibility.
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I'm not your examiner, I'm not your lawyer, and I'm speaking only for myself, not for the USPTO.
 



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