408 Telephoning Patent Practitioner [R-11.2013]
Present Office policy places great emphasis on telephone interviews. When applicant is initiating a request for an interview, an “Applicant Initiated Interview Request” form (PTOL-413A) should be submitted to the examiner prior to the interview in order to permit the examiner to prepare in advance for the interview and to focus on the issues to be discussed. This form should identify the participants of the interview, the proposed date of the interview, whether the interview will be personal, telephonic, or video conference, and should include a brief description of the issues to be discussed. See MPEP §§ 713.01 and 713.05.
Many patent practitioners have offices or representatives in the Washington area and it sometimes expedites business to interview them concerning an application. When the examiner believes the progress of the application would be advanced by an interview, he or she may call the patent practitioner of record in the application by telephone and suggest a telephonic, personal, or video conference interview.
Registered attorneys or agents not of record in a patent application and acting in a representative capacity under 37 CFR 1.34 should not be telephoned for restriction requirements, approval of examiner's amendments, or given any information relative to such patent application by telephone. See MPEP § 405 for interviews with a patent practitioner not of record. See MPEP § 812.01 for telephone restriction practice. In addition, non-registered representatives of the practitioner of record should not be telephoned for such actions, even if apparently authorized by the attorney or agent of record.