14 December 2021

Has the Backlog Stabilized?

CIPO’s backlog of unexamined trademark applications appears to have stabilized somewhat.  For the past 7 weeks (i.e. since mid-October 2021) the backlog has hovered at around 180,000 applications although it is still creeping upward.

The chart below shows1 that the backlog of unexamined applications (blue line) has increased significantly since March 2020, while the number of examined applications (red line) has increased more modestly.

Mar '20 - Dec '21 exam trend

As of 13-Dec-2021, the unexamined application backlog includes cases filed up to 40 months ago (i.e. August 2018).  See for example application no. 1914966.

Click the “Unexamined Application Backlog” tab (or just click here) for a month-by-month breakdown of the backlog as of 13-Dec-2021.  Scroll down further to see a similar breakdown as of 19-Apr-2021.

1 The horizontal (date) axis is not continuous. CIPO releases updates to its trademark .xml data each week.  I download and process each weekly release, but I have not recorded the backlog in each and every week—hence the discontinuity.