The America Invents Act, also known as the patent attorney full employment act, created a new micro entity status for reduced fees.  The Patent Office today release what they hope to be the new rules.  The full text can be found here.   Basically you can get 75% off most fees that you pay for a patent if you:

(1) qualify as a small entity ;

(2) have not been named as an inventor on more than four previously filed patent applications;

(3) do not have a gross income more than three times the median household income forthe preceding
calendar year; and

(4) have not assigned, granted, or conveyed, and are not under an obligation by contract or
law to assign, grant, or convey, a license or other ownership interest in the application concerned to an entity that had a gross income exceeding three times the median household income for
that preceding calendar year.

The Patent Office will post what it considers to be the median income for the previous year on its web site.

This will be welcome relief for those that qualify.  As to the rest of the America Invents Act, it remains to be seen how it will play out.

If you need help determining how best to protect your ideas, or know someone that can use my help, please contact me for a free 30 minute consultation at or call TOLL FREE at 1-855-UR IDEAS (1-855-874-3327) and ask for Norman.