United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)

The Agency for Granting U.S. Patents and Registering Trademarks

About the USPTO
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is the federal agency for granting U.S. patents and registering trademarks. The USPTO fulfills the mandate of Article I of the Constitution that the legislative branch "promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries."

Under this system of protection, American industry has flourished. New products have been invented, new uses for old ones discovered and employment opportunities created for millions of Americans. The strength and vitality of the U.S. economy depends directly on effective mechanisms that protect new ideas and investments in innovation and creativity.

The USPTO advises the president of the United States, the secretary of commerce and U.S. government agencies on intellectual property (IP) policy, protection and enforcement; and promotes the stronger and more effective IP protection around the world. The USPTO furthers effective IP protection for U.S. innovators and entrepreneurs worldwide by working with other agencies to secure strong IP provisions in free trade and other international agreements. It also provides training, education and capacity building programs designed to foster respect for IP and encourage the development of strong IP enforcement regimes by U.S. trading partners. Learn more.

Patents for Humanity
Patents for Humanity is the USPTO's awards competition recognizing innovators who use game-changing technology to meet global humanitarian challenges. The program provides business incentives for reaching those in need: winners receive an acceleration certificate to expedite select proceedings at the USPTO, as well as public recognition of their work. The awards showcase how patent holders with vision are pioneering innovative ways to provide affordable, scalable and sustainable solutions for the less fortunate. Learn more about the program and submitting an application.