USPTO Presentations to the NAPP Annual Meeting
- "Recent Rule Makings and Patent Practice Changes" by Robert Sparr Director, of the Office of Patent Legal Administration (http://www.box.net/public/2ha6xkccdr)
- "Office of Enrollment and Discipline Monitoring Practitioner Compliance With Disciplinary Rules" (http://www.box.net/public/uxblihxykg) (Reviewed by Axel Horns here)
- "USPTO 21st Century Strategic Plan Update" by John Doll, Commissioner for Patents (http://www.box.net/public/21jmbypk5z)
European Patent Attorney Axel Horns adds, "Whilst some of the items are nothing else than a matter of course, others appear to have a taste of shifting problems from the Office to the applicants and their representatives. . . . The U.S. Patent Attorney finds himself in a very difficult situation with his client, the applicant, desiring to get as much patent protection as possible, on the one hand, and the OED threatening with severe disciplinary action, on the other hand."
They lay out the most recent version of PTO's proposed changes to continuation practice (soon to be announced), priority claims, numbers of claims, etc, along with other new proposals. I know the PTO is still officially "considering" the comments on the previously proposed rules. But with an announcement expected in Sept/Oct, it would seem that this July presentation is the likely route being followed (i.e., not just floating ideas at this point).
The proposal would limit applicants to 1 continuation filing as a matter of right, eliminate divisional applications unless necessitated by restriction, limit priority claims to only a single application, etc. The fact there is a petition process to allow some exceptions to these rules does not add much comfort.