If an applicant files a patent application with the USPTO with the intention of eventually filing the same application in other countries, how does the publication date of the USPTO application affect the eligibility to file in other countries?

If the publication date does matter, then can the applicant control when the USPTO application is published?

1 Answer 1


Usually one would claim priority from the U.S. application when foreign filing which would make the (later) U.S. publication irrelevant. But one can foreign file also without priority. Generally, the foreign countries in question won't consider foreign applications (i.e., U.S. applications) as being prior art as of their filing date, but rather as of their publication date so that gives a buffer.

Publication is supposed to be at 18 months from the earliest priority.

Also to be aware of, there is such a thing as a non-publication request which prevents publication before issuance (or in the event no patent can be granted). While this may sound great, it is unfortunately not allowed to be used together with foreign filing.

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