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Friday Aug 03, 2012

USPTO to Publish Final Rules for the Citation of Prior Art and Written Statements Provision

From Janet Gongola, Patent Reform Coordinator:

The USPTO announces that on Monday, August 6, 2012, it will publish final rules for the citation of prior art and written statements provision in the Federal Register.  Today, on Friday, August 3, 2012, these final rules are available in the Federal Register Reading Room and here:

Changes to Implement Miscellaneous Post Patent Provisions

The citation of prior art and written statements provision expands the information that a patent owner or third party may submit to the Office in a patent file.  Prior to the AIA, a party could submit only prior art into a patent file.  Under the AIA, starting on September 16, 2012, a party also may submit statements that the patent owner made about the scope of the patent claims either during a federal court proceeding or another USPTO proceeding.  As a result of this provision, the Office as well as the courts will both be informed as to how a patent owner represents claim scope.  Additionally, the AIA provides for how the Office may use patent owner claim scope statements during an ex parte or inter partes reexamination or during one of the new administrative trials of inter partes review, post grant review, or covered business method review.      

In the next few days, the USPTO will be publishing additional final rules for the inventor’s oath/declaration, supplemental examination, and administrative trial provisions that also become effective on September 16, 2012.  The USPTO will host eight roadshows in Atlanta, Alexandria, Va., Denver, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, and New York City during September 2012 to discuss all of these final rules.  I encourage you to attend one of these roadshows to learn how the final rules will operate and have the opportunity to ask questions about them.

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