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PGPUB Comments - Slate

Sent: Thursday, April 27, 2000 8:46 AM
To: Pre Grant Pub
Subject: Comments

Re: Federal Register Notice: Changes to Implement Eighteen-Month Publication of Patent Applications (05Apr2000)

Dear Sir,

A cursory read of the proposed rule changes (37 CFR 1.211 (a)) seems to indicate that the Office will publish a PCT U.S. National Phase (371) application even when the underlying International Application was already published in English.

Is this correct?

If not, this should be made explicit such as by adding a subsection 1.211 (a) (5) along the lines: "(5) the international application in compliance with 35 U.S.C. 371 was previously published in the English language."

If so, the value of republication is questionable and should be reconsidered. Republication seems to be of very little value in the particular case where the USPTO was IPEA and all claims presented satisfied the provisions of PCT Articles 33(1) to (4). In that case, the 371 application could be expected to promptly issue as a patent and might only be delayed by publication. It might be advantageous to at least provide a mechanism to avoid publication if the applicant takes appropriate steps to expedite issue of such a 371 application.

William B. Slate
Reg. No. 37238

United States Patent and Trademark Office
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