The main impact of this surge will be an increase in the pendency of first reports in coming years. Pendency is expected to increase in the December 2013 quarter, and is likely to exceed the 12 month customer service charter commitment by the end of April 2014. Based on projections, this could average up to 19 months at its peak during 2014, before returning to the 12 month commitment in early 2015.
In response, IP Australia has restricted directions to applications that are 57 months from filing date. This will keep new requests for examination to a minimum, while the enormous volume of pre April 2013 examination requests are processed.
It is likely that IP Australia will have to revise the customer service charter in 2014 due to these exceptional circumstances.
IP Australia will continue to monitor the situation and update customers where appropriate.