The Post Grant Outcomes Pilot, developed as a part of the Post Grant Outcomes program of the Enhanced Patent Quality Initiative, involves pending patent applications that are related to issued patents undergoing an America Invents Act (AIA) trial proceeding before the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). AIA trial proceedings contain prior art and arguments that can be highly relevant to the patentability determination of related applications currently under examination. To support a thorough search and examination of any related applications, it is important for examiners to consider the contents (including prior art) of the AIA trial proceeding of the related issued patent. This Pilot will enhance the quality of patentability determinations in these related pending patent applications by notifying examiners when they have an application related to an AIA trial proceeding, streamlining access to the contents of AIA trial proceedings, and determining and disseminating best practices for evaluating those proceedings.
Description of Duties and Selection of Pilot Participants
- Pilot participants will be selected if their docket includes at least one application that is currently related to (i.e. as a continuation, continuation-in-part, or divisional) an issued patent involved in an AIA trial proceeding.
- Participation in the Pilot is voluntary.
- Specialists in each technology center (TC) will contact selected examiners, by email, to notify them of applications eligible for the Pilot. Invitations to participate will provide instructions on how to retrieve and review the contents of the AIA trial proceedings of the related issued patent.
- Post Grant Outcomes Pilot: April-August, 2016
- Pilot Frequently Asked Questions
- Post Grant Outcomes Pilot Summary Results (651.72 KB)