Subject to the provisions of this title, patents shall have the attributes of personal property. The Patent and Trademark Office shall maintain a register of interests in patents and applications for patents and shall record any document related thereto upon request, and may require a fee therefor.
Applications for patent, patents, or any interest therein, shall be assignable in law by an instrument in writing. The applicant, patentee, or his assigns or legal representatives may in like manner grant and convey an exclusive right under his application for patent, or patents, to the whole or any specified part of the United States.
A certificate of acknowledgment under the hand and official seal of a person authorized to administer oaths within the United States, or, in a foreign country, of a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States or an officer authorized to administer oaths whose authority is proved by a certificate of a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States, or apostille of an official designated by a foreign country which, by treaty or convention, accords like effect to apostilles of designated officials in the United States, shall be prima facie evidence of the execution of an assignment, grant or conveyance of a patent or application for patent.
An interest that constitutes an assignment, grant or conveyance shall be void as against any subsequent purchaser or mortgagee for a valuable consideration, without notice, unless it is recorded in the Patent and Trademark Office within three months from its date or prior to the date of such subsequent purchase or mortgage.
35 U.S.C. § 261
HISTORICAL AND REVISION NOTESBased on Title 35, U.S.C., 1946 ed., §47 (R.S. 4898, amended (1) Mar. 3, 1897, ch. 391, §5, 29 Stat. 93 [29 Stat. 693], (2) Feb. 18, 1922, ch. 58, §6, 42 Stat. 391, (3) Aug. 18, 1941, ch. 370, 55 Stat. 634).The first paragraph is new but is declaratory only. The second paragraph is the same as in the corresponding section of existing statute. The third paragraph is from the existing statute, a specific reference to another statute is omitted. The fourth paragraph is the same as the existing statute but language has been changed.
AMENDMENTS2012- Pub. L. 112-211 inserted "The Patent and Trademark Office shall maintain a register of interests in patents and applications for patents and shall record any document related thereto upon request, and may require a fee therefor." at end of first par. and substituted "An interest that constitutes an assignment" for "An assignment" in fourth par.1982- Pub. L. 97-247 inserted ", or apostille of an official designated by a foreign country which, by treaty or convention, accords like effect to apostilles of designated officials in the United States".1975- Pub. L. 93-596 substituted "Patent and Trademark Office" for "Patent Office".
STATUTORY NOTES AND RELATED SUBSIDIARIES
EFFECTIVE DATE OF 2012 AMENDMENTAmendment by Pub. L. 112-211 effective on the date that is 1 year after Dec. 18, 2012, applicable to patents issued before, on, or after that effective date and patent applications pending on or filed after that effective date, and not effective with respect to patents in litigation commenced before that effective date, see section 203 of Pub. L. 112-211 set out as an Effective Date note under sectionof this title.
EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1982 AMENDMENTAmendment by Pub. L. 97-247 effective Aug. 27, 1982, see section 17(a) of Pub. L. 97-247 set out as a note under sectionof this title.
EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1975 AMENDMENTAmendment by Pub. L. 93-596 effective Jan. 2, 1975, see section 4 of Pub. L. 93-596 set out as a note under sectionof Title 15, Commerce and Trade.
- United States
- The terms "United States" and "this country" mean the United States of America, its territories and possessions.
- The word "patentee" includes not only the patentee to whom the patent was issued but also the successors in title to the patentee.