GAO: USPTO Hiring Won’t Reduce Backlog

Wednesday the Government Accountability Office released a report [Summary] [Full Report] that found “it is unlikely that the [Patent Office] will be able to reduce the growing backlog simply through its hiring efforts.” The report provided, “The agency has also estimated that if it were able to hire 2,000 patent examiners per year in fiscal year 2007 and each of the next 5 years, the backlog would continue to increase by about 260,000 applications, to 953,643 at the end of fiscal year 2011.” Therefore the report stated, “Despite its recent increases in hiring, the agency has acknowledged that it cannot hire its way out of the backlog and is now focused on slowing the growth of the backlog instead of reducing it.”

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