2023 In Review: USPTO Patent Bar Exam Passing Rate Report 

Annual Passing Rate Reports, Exploring a Patent, the MPEP, and the Patent Bar, Patent Bar Insights

Patent Bar Exam Success Rates: Annual Overview.

This analysis presents the annual total of Patent Bar exams administered and the corresponding pass rates.

The National Average Passing Rate on the Patent Bar Exam in 2023 was only 46%


The Patent Bar, officially known as the United States Patent and Trademark Office Registration Examination, is a crucial step for those seeking to practice patent prosecution – the process of securing patent rights for new inventions. This field is particularly attractive to individuals with a background in science or engineering who wish to apply their expertise in a legal setting, or those considering a shift into the specialized domain of IP law.

Regarded as one of the toughest professional exams, the Patent Bar Exam poses a significant challenge. Passing rates for the Patent Bar Exam have historically hovered around 50%, with a ten-year average of 47%. However, Wysebridge users consistently surpass this, with first-time test takers achieving over an 80% pass rate – significantly above the national average. When considering all Wysebridge users, including those on subsequent attempts, the success rate climbs into the upper 80th percentile.


The exam currently operates in both computer-based and paper-based formats. The computer-based exam, administered by Prometric, offers flexibility in scheduling and location. The USPTO also conducts a paper-based exam annually at a predetermined location. The exam comprises 100 questions divided into two sections, each with a 3-hour time limit and a 1-hour break in between. Answers are locked in after each section and automatically submitted when time expires. To pass, candidates must score 70%, equating to 63 out of 90 scored questions, as 10 are unscored beta questions.

Given the exam’s complexity and the necessity to understand its nuances, review programs like Wysebridge are invaluable. They provide guidance on exam strategies and essential study content, going beyond mere guessing to ensure a well-prepared approach. For those interested in taking the exam, Wysebridge offers comprehensive resources, including an overview of the basics and the General Requirements Bulletin from the USPTO.