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Ralph E. Jocke

0/09/2004 15:01 FAX 3307226446
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Ralph E. Jocke
patcnt

Trademark Law
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Mr. Harry I. Moatz
703.306.4134
February 9, 2004
Ra1pb E. Jocke, Esq.
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Ralph E. Jocke
Patent. q(0 C e
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`Trademark Law
February 9, 2004
' Via Facsimile Transmission
703.306.4134
Mr. Harry I. Moatz
United States Patent and Trademark Office
Post Office Box 1450
Alexandria, Virginia 22313-1450
Re: Comments on Proposed Ethics Rules

Dear Mr. Moatz:

I write to oppose adoption of the proposed rules publish' Register Vol. 68, No. 239. These proposed rules are unnecessary burden on attorneys and agents who practice before the PTO.

December 12, 2003, at Federal over broad and impose undue

The mandatory continuing legal education ("CLE) requirement is unnecessary. , Practitioners who fail to comply with PTO requirements currently have their papers returned and are directed to comply with the rules before their papers will be accepted. Any practitioner who fails to comply with mandatory PTO rules quickly learns to comply. Further, any client whose rights are prejudiced by a practitioner who has failed to comply with PTO rules has recourse, both by way of an action fox malpractice as well as under existing state and PTO disciplinary procedures.

The mandatory CLE requirement is further unduly burdensome and arbitrary because it leaves it to the PTO to decide the type and amount of mandatory CLB. The PTO should not have the authority to impose such requirements on an arbitrary basis.

The mandatory CLE requirement is also unduly burdensome because it is potentially duplicative and conflicting with CLE requirements imposed on lawyers by state authority. Lawyers in Ohio such as myself are required to obtain at least 24 hours of CIE instruction every two years. All CLE programs which qualify for credit must be approved y the Ohio, Supreme Court. Under the PTO's proposed rules, the CLE mandated by the PTO may not qualify for credit under Ohio's mandatory CLE requirements. It is also questionable bather the PTO will dedicate the resources necessary to have its CLE programs qualify for CLE credit under the rules of the Ohio Supreme Court or other states. For these reasons; tine PTO mandatory CLE requirements may be in addition to state CLE requirements, resulting in undue burden on practitioners.

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Mr. Harry I. Moatz February 9, 2004 ' Page 2


I also oppose the $100 per year fee the PTO: wishes to impose on patent practitioner.. This fee is burdensome and unnecessary. Practitioners such as myself already pay considerable mandatory fees for the privilege of practicing law. This new proposed fee on top or other existing fees and costs (such as the cost to attend mandatory CLE programs) presents a significant undue burden. There is nothing in the proposed rules that would reasonably justify the imposition of such an additional fee. Further, it is noted that the PTO, budget appropriation should put an end to the diversion of PTO fee revenue to other federal programs, which patent practitioners such as myself have long opposed. Putting an end to the diversion f fee revenue would further eliminate the need for this additional $ 100 fee.

I further oppose the adoption of the proposed rules because inadequate time was given for study and analysis. The publication of such a massive rule-making package during the holiday season and providing only 60 days, for comments is unreasonable. In addition, the proposed rules materially differ from the Code of Professional Responsibility which currently applies to attorneys in the State of Ohio. These proposed rules are unduly burdensome because they subject attorneys to potentially inconsistent requirements.


. Very truly yours,


Ralph E. Jocke

RE) ags

United States Patent and Trademark Office
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