U.S. Patent Document Kind Codes

The USPTO introduced new patent document kind codes, shown in Table 1, on January 2, 2001. Codes used prior to 2001 are shown Table 2. Patent offices use kind codes, which are defined under WIPO Standard ST.16, to distinguish between different types of patent documents. Kind code H is in the process of being phased out due to the cancellation in 2013 of the Statutory Invention Registration Program. Kind codes F, J, K and O were created in 2012-2013 as a result of provisions in the America Invents Act of 2011.

Table 1. U.S. Patent Document Kind Codes (as of Jan. 2, 2001)

Kind Code Document Type Note
A1 Utility application, first publication
A2 Utility application, second or subsequent publication
A9 Utility application, correction
B1 Utility patent, no pre-grant publication
B2 Utility patent, with pre-grant publication
C Reexamination certificate C1, C2, C3, etc.
E Reissue patent
F Supplemental examination certificate F1, F2, F3, etc.
H Statutory invention registration (SIR) Discontinued in 2013
J Post grant review certificate J1, J2, J3, etc.
K Inter partes review certificate K1, K2, K3, etc.
O Derivation certificate O1, O2, O3, etc.
P1 Plant patent application, first publication
P2 Plant patent, no pre-grant publication
P3 Plant patent, with pre-grant publication
P4 Plant patent application, second or subsequent publication
P9 Plant patent application, correction
S Design patent

Table 2. Obsolete U.S. Patent Document Kind Codes (codes used prior to January 2, 2001)

Code Document Type Notes
A Patent Replaced by B1 or B2
P Plant patent Replaced by P2 or P3
B1, B2, B3 Reaxmination certificate Replaced by C1, C2, C3, etc.

Sources

Manual of Patent Examining Procedure, 9th ed., March 2014

WIPO Standard ST.16:  Identification of Different Kinds of Patent Documents (May 1997)

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