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A patent application or patent’s official condition is considered its “status” and is defined by action and time. Patent status terms include: new, abandoned, abandonment for failure to pay issue fee, allowed or in issue, amended, expired, incomplete, lapsed, pending, re-issued, rejected, and protected. An applicant, or a person entitled to the information, can send a “status letter” to the USPTO to inquire as to a patent application’s status.

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